Rustic Bread

You really can’t beat homemade bread fresh from the oven, but the time management required to plan for kneading and multiple rises can be daunting.  Well, this recipe has none of those challenges!  You simply combine all the ingredients the day before, and your bread is ready to bake the next day.  Nice and simple… and tasty!

Rustic Bread

The are many rustic/peasant bread recipes out there floating around on Pinterest and food blogs.  The ingredients for our Rustic Bread come from this recipe.  This bread is great for soup or sandwiches or simply as a meal accompaniment.  It’s easy to make, tastes great, and has a wonderful texture.  You gotta try it!

Rustic Bread

Prep Time: 5 minutes + 12-18 hour rise time

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Serves: 4

Ingredients

2 c. Flour
1 tsp. Salt
generous 1/4 tsp. Yeast
1 c. Water

1.  Combine all ingredients in a bowl.  Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and allow the dough to rise on the counter for 12-18 hours.

Risen Dough

2.  Heat your oven to 450° F.

3.  While the oven is heating, shape the dough into a round and place on a well-floured surface.  Dust the top with flour.

Now, from here there are two different cooking methods: pizza stone (my preferred method) or Dutch oven.  Below are directions for both.

Pizza Stone Method

For this method, you’ll want to have your pizza stone in the oven while it’s heating.  You’ll also need a large metal bowl – I use a mixing bowl.

4.  After the oven has preheated, allow the stone to heat for 30 additional minutes.

5.  Once the stone is heated, place the dough on the stone and cover it with your metal bowl.

Pizza Stone MethodCover with Bowl

6.  After 30 minutes, remove the bowl.  The bread should still be pretty pale but will feel crusty.

Remove Bowl

7.  Cook for an additional 15 minutes until the outside is golden.

Dutch Oven Method

4.  Once the oven is preheated, put the dutch oven (with the lid) into the oven and heat for 10 minutes.  (If you want an even crunchier crust, leave the pot in the oven longer – up to 30 minutes).

5.  Pull the dutch oven out of the oven and carefully (the pan is HOT!) drop the dough into the dutch oven.  Cover and return to the oven.  Bake 30 minutes then remove the lid and bake another 15 minutes.

Cooked Bread

With either method, your end product should be a round, golden, crunchy bread loaf.  I prefer the pizza stone method as the bottom of the bread seems to come out a little softer making it easier to cut and chew.

Rustic Bread Loaf

Tip: The crunchiness of this loaf makes it difficult to cut, regardless of the method.  I’ve found that a serrated utility knife actually works better than a bread knife.  Another thing that helps is to let the loaf cool before cutting it – then the bread retains its shape instead of getting squished by the knife as you cut it.  Try to wait at least 15 minutes after it’s out of the oven.

Serrated Knife

After just a few minutes of work the day before, you’ve got yourself a fresh, homemade bread loaf for your next meal.  It really doesn’t get easier than that…  Try this bread with our Butternut Squash Soup!  **FIX**

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