Crackling homemade Dutch-oven bread makes an average day extraordinary. Enjoy this beautiful crusty bread recipe as is, or stir in a few favorites like cheese, garlic, herbs and dried fruits.
- 3 to 3-1/2 cups (125 grams per cup) all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1-1/2 cups water (70° to 75°)
- In a large bowl, whisk 3 cups flour, yeast and salt. Stir in water and enough remaining flour to form a moist, shaggy dough. Do not knead. Cover and let rise in a cool place until doubled, 7-8 hours.
- Preheat oven to 450°; place a Dutch oven with lid onto center rack and heat for at least 30 minutes. Once Dutch oven is heated, turn dough onto a generously floured surface. Using a metal scraper or spatula, quickly shape into a round loaf. Gently place on top of a piece of parchment.
- Using a sharp knife, make a slash (1/4 in. deep) across top of loaf. Using the parchment, immediately lower bread into heated Dutch oven. Cover; bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake until bread is deep golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped, 15-20 minutes longer, partially covering if browning too much. Remove loaf from pan and cool completely on wire rack.