crazy easy, beautiful and delicious homemade artisan bread

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a few weeks ago, i mentioned in a ten thoughts on a wednesday post that i had started making homemade artisan bread, and many of you asked for the recipe!

i am not exaggerating when i say that the first time i took a loaf of this bread out of the oven, my jaw dropped and i gasped. i honestly couldn’t believe that i had made something so beautiful from scratch so easily! all i did was mix together four ingredients, leave it overnight, and put it in the oven. what the?! i’m officially obsessed and have had to limit my bread making to two loaves per week :)

the one thing about this recipe is that it requires a dutch oven / heavy cast iron dish. we got a le creuset brand pot for our wedding and it is without a doubt my favourite kitchen item that we own. it can be used on the stove top and put in the oven and is incredibly useful – and really pretty! ;) if you don’t have a suitable dish for this recipe, i recommend getting one as a kitchen investment if you can swing it (there are definitely other brands that are cheaper than le creuset).

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so here’s the super simple, easy recipe for making gorgeous bread that would fool anyone into thinking you’re a total homemade bread pro!

in a large bowl, mix together 3 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 tps dry yeast, and 2 tsp kosher or sea salt. then, gradually add 1 1/2 cups lukewarm water while stirring. **do not overmix!** stir until everything is just combined – your dough should be kind of shaggy.

cover the bowl tightly (really try to make sure no air can get in) and let it sit at room temperature for 8 hours, over night, or up to 24 hours.

when you’re ready to bake your bread, heat up your oven to 450 f / 230 c. once the oven is fully heated, put your dish, uncovered, in the oven for thirty minutes. meanwhile, take the dough out of the bowl, shape it into a loose ball and cover it lightly.

after the thirty minutes are up, put the dough ball into the dish (i like to use parchment paper just to reduce mess). cover the dish and bake the bread for thirty minutes. remove the lid and let the bread bake for a few more minutes (it will depend on your oven and your preference – i usually let it bake uncovered for just 5-10 minutes, but you might want it a little more browned or have an oven that browns a bit slower). 

bam! crazy easy, beautiful and delicious homemade artisan bread!

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i’ve been experimenting with adding extra ingredients to this recipe. my favourite so far has been dried cranberries and slivered almonds. i’ve also done cheese, and pesto … the possibilities are endless! my first cheese loaf was a tiny bit weird, so it does take a little bit of adjusting on the recipe/baking time if you add things in. but after a couple loaves you kind of just figure out what works best with what ingredients. if you try any cool add-ins, will you leave me a comment and let me know?!

happy bread baking!

(ps i just realized this is my one thousandth post on this blog! and that this year marks ten years of blogging for me! wild. i really love having this little spot on the world wide web – thank you for reading!)

12 comments:

  1. Can you make this with whole grains?

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    1. i'm not sure - i haven't tried yet!

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  2. Thank you for posting the recipe....I can't wait to try it!!!

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  3. an extra trick char! you can put the pot in once you start the preheat on the oven and keep it for 30 min starting then! it saves that preheat time- 15 min or so? and when you need that bread, 15 min is a big deal haha.

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  4. In my experience you don't need a dutch oven. Just put it on a pizza stone and then put a pan in the oven to create some steam. That will help give the loaf a beautiful crust and no expensive pot--though I do love me a good reason to buy kitchen items!! I'll have to give this a try. My current artisan loaf recipe is a bit time intensive (6 hours).

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    1. I should add, take the extra pan with water out for the "uncovered" baking time in Charity's recipe.

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    2. thanks, heather! but i guess your method does require a pizza stone (which i don't have...). if you don't have a dutch oven, you should get one! you can find them for much cheaper than the fancy brands, and i absolutely LOVE mine (NOT just for this bread, but for so many other things!).

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  5. What size le crueset do you have? Will you please also share the details of what you have to adjust when you add cheese to the dough?

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    1. i think i have the twelve inch. i haven't figured out the cheese recipe perfectly yet! but i will try to update when i do figure it out! ;)

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  6. I just made this and it turned out fantastic! Thank you! I added sliced garlic and lots of black pepper!

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  7. Can't wait to have you do this for us when you get here. Except...I need to get "a pan"!

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