If you’re anything like me, you consider bread an integral part of your daily existence. Personally, I’d take fresh baked bread over chocolate any day. Seriously. But with two toddlers and less personal time than I’d like to admit, baking bread just doesn’t usually make the cut of things we get to do very regularly. I even have a bread machine and I’ve cultivated my own sourdough starter (epic fail – don’t even get me started on that one). Still, we don’t see a lot of homemade bread in our house.
Enter, the easiest, most delicious bread recipe…..ever. I’ve actually tried a couple variations of this recipe in the past. I’ve taken a few similar recipes and condensed them into one, easy, foolproof method so you can have fresh, delicious bread any time you want it.
First, mix 3 c. flour, 1 3/4 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. yeast in a very large bowl. Pour in 1 1/2 c. warm water and stir until you have a thick, sticky lump of dough. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to sit on your counter for 12-18 hours. Seriously. Just leave it there.
When you wake the next morning (I tend to make my dough before I go to bed), go straight to your oven and crank it up to 450 with your dutch oven (or other large pot with a lid) inside. By now, your dough should have doubled or even tripled in size.
It’s now even stickier than before, so sprinkle some flour on top and gently pour (pull/scrape/maneuver) it into a ball-like-shape onto a large piece of parchment paper. After your dutch oven has been heating up in the oven for about a half hour, carefully pick up your dough by the parchment paper and plop the whole thing into the pot.
Bake for 30 min with the lid on, and then an additional 15 min with the lid off.
That’s it. For real. No kneading, no hard work. About 5 minutes before bed and 5 minutes in the morning (plus baking time) and you can have fresh, preservative free, homemade bread any time you want it.
You don’t need to thank me. But, do tell me if you give it a try!