Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Revisiting Artisan Bread 101

Kim at Savvy Southern Style today offered an invitation
 to re post something we've done this year
for this week's linky party.
I looked back at my posts for this year and
this one was the most visited,
so I'm bringing it back for the occasion.
I'm still making it and
still loving it!

 Remember when bread machines were the
"must-have" kitchen appliances?
For many years I had one that gave
me excellent results and
I never bought bread.
I literally used it to death.
However, my bread efforts were never
as successful with my second bread machine.

So, I gave up bread baking and contented myself
with this "not-too-bad" store bought one.
Then last year at a knitting retreat
I tasted a friend's "baked that morning"
artisan bread.
I came home determined to
start baking bread again.
With some Internet investigations
I have found an extremely easy
method to make artisan bread.

(from Google images)
I am simplifying the recipe here, but you can
go to source with this book.
If you do try this method, please
go to this website for the complete
and detailed instructions.

Four simple ingredients are ALL you need.

Place 3 cups lukewarm water in a large bowl.

Add 1 1/2 T. granulated yeast (2 packets)
1 T. kosher or other coarse salt
6 1/2 c. flour, unsifted, unbleached, all-purpose

Aren't these measuring spoons great?

They were a Christmas present!
Thank you Rick and Terry!

Mix with a wooden spoon.

Kneading is unnecessary.
Mix just until there are no moist patches.

Cover (not airtight) and allow to rise at

room temperature for
approximately two hours.
At this point you are ready to bake,
or refrigerate the dough (covered) until you are.
I usually make the dough and then
bake on another day.
The refrigerated dough is
easier to handle than when
it is at room temperature.
The dough can be stored for up

to two weeks.
Refrigerating the dough for

at least 24 hours improves the flavor.
On baking day,

sprinkle the surface of your dough with flour
and divide it into four equal portions.
I "cut" it into portions with a knife,
then scoop out one section at a time.
Flour your hands, take one
portion and shape it into a smooth ball.
Do not spend a lot of time or effort here,
this should take less than a minute.

Place the loaf on a lightly oiled

and floured baking sheet.
I always bake all four loaves
at the same time
and freeze three loaves
for later.
Let the dough rest for 20 minutes.

After 20 minutes, began preheating
your oven to 450 degrees F.
When you turn on the oven,
place an empty broiler tray
on a lower shelf in the oven.
After 20 minutes (dough has now
rested a total of 40 minutes)
you are ready to bake.
(Don't be concerned if your oven
hasn't yet reached the
desired temperature.)
Dust with flour and slash the
tops of your loaves.
I also sprinkle the tops of all
four loaves with a bit more
kosher salt.
Place loaves in oven and
pour 1 cup of hot tap water into
the broiler pan you've been
preheating. This creates the
steam which will give your
bread a nice crunchy crust.
Bake for about 30 minutes.
Crust should be nicely browned
and firm to the touch.

It doesn't get much simpler,

or better,
than that!

I am linking this post to
Wow us Wednesday at Savvy Southern Style


Almost Precious said...

There's nothing quite as savory as fresh, homemade bread still warm from the oven. This recipe looks amazingly simple, even simple enough for a kitchen klutz like me. :)
BTW - the measuring spoon set is precious, love it.

Andrea said...

It is fate. I bought this VERY book on Amazon just a few minutes before I read this blog post! Crazy! I can't wait to start making bread for my family. My sweet little girls eat tons of bread, so it will be great to know that I am making fresh, wholesome, love-filled food for them!

I also agree about the measuring spoons. I always ache with envy as I watch Paula Deen use her silver ones on her show. Maybe someday I'll have a set, too!

Stitchfork said...

I'll take a hunk of warm fresh bread over chocolate any day! And I use my bread machine to make the dough, then roll or shape it myself to bake. Lost count how many bread machines I have worn out! Dough rising right now.
xo Cathy

Fifi Flowers said...

Very pretty!

Linda said...

What a beautiful looking bread!! Thank you for sharing your research with US so WE don't have to!

Pam - @diy Design Fanatic said...

Looks gorgeous! My husband has just gotten into baking bread. I am going to forward this to hime :)

Robin said...

I love to visit you...I feel nourished each and every time. And now the bread...wonderful.
I haven't made bread since my early 30's, you've made it look doable. I've got to try this...nothing in all the world compares to a loaf of bread baking and filling the house w/ the fragrance of 'home'.

Tanna said...

This looks wonderful!! And, easy. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe.

Susan Freeman said...

You have inspired me to start baking bread once again!

Susan and Bentley

Peg said...

Oh wow, I never knew how to make the artisan crust! I will definitely try your recipe. It looks great!

Peg said...

Couldn't stand it, so I made this bread today. I have it in the refrigerator and will bake it over the weekend. Thanks for the recipe. I know it will be good!

fitty's pinky rose cottage said...

ohhh this is just perfect! I always wanted to make my own bread. I tried many times, but hardly turn outs as expected! I currently looking for a good bread making machine! but anyhow thanks for sharing this recipe. I might give it a try coz they look delish!

Unknown said...

can i tell you how much i love you right now!? i've been looking for a delicious, (relatively) simple artisan bread recipe and i think this is it! i will definitely be trying this recipe this week! thank you, thank you, thank you! :D

came from the tasty tuesday blog hop and am your newest follower! stop by my blog if you get the chance!


MrsJenB said...

Get...out...of...town. I'm serious. This can't be for real - it's that easy? Snow day tomorrow. I'm making this to go with my spaghetti dinner. The end.

Thank you so much for sharing this - I can't tell you how amazing a discovery this is for me! Sincerely.

Visiting from Tasty Tuesdays!

Christina @ It's a Keeper said...

I have been trying to bake bread for a while now and have not had success. I am bookmarking this recipe and will try it this weekend. You make it sound so easy! :)

I would love for you to link this or any of your recipes to my blog hop @ It's a Keeper Thursdays. http://www.everydaytastes.com/

Thanks so much for sharing!

Pam - @diy Design Fanatic said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Pam - @diy Design Fanatic said...

My husband made this bread tonight. He made the dough yesterday and baked it today. It was really great! Thanks for sharing this- the bread was really yummy! I'm going to have to post about it this week!

Lizabeth said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lizabeth said...

Thank-you for the tutorial...Pam posted the story about her good results with this bread so I am going to try it now! Can't wait!

Jane@Cottage at the Crossroads said...

I have had the Artisan Bread cookbook for a year now, but I haven't baked any bread yet! I think you have inspired me to try it tomorrow. I made some homemade yogurt today and will post about it later this week.

Christine @ Stonehouse Living said...

Hi Susan,
What a great recipe!
I will have to try it...looks so good!
Visiting from WOW, I'm happy to be your newest follower!
All the Best,

kitty@ Kitty's Kozy Kitchen said...

I've been making this bread for quite some time now & have the cookbook. It's so wonderful, isn't it? I make pizza out of the dough, too.

thistlewoodfarm said...

What a fun, easy recipe! I just got a bread maker for Christmas, but I may have to try this! I love your measuring spoons.

Tanna said...

Okay, this is worth another (almost year later) comment! I so wish I were not on a diet again!!! Doggonit! I needed this one during the month of decadence! LOL! I know it is fabulous. blessings ~ tanna

❁Velma ~Down Our Country Road❁ said...

Oh my, this bread looks so yummy! I love homemade bread but don't make it often enough. I think I'm going to have to try this one....soon! Thanks for reposting since I haven't seen the original post. :)

Vicki Boster said...

Susan- as much as I LOVE my bread machine- this makes me want to go home and bake fresh bread right now! Wonderful pictures- that bread crust looks perfect!

WAM said...

Tried this for the very first time on Memorial Day. They were fantastic. Making them again this weekend. Who needs ours german village bakery.

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