The easiest bread ever, no kneading required. Inspired by the famous recipe from Jim Lahey and made popular by New York Times, this one takes a little planning ahead but most of the time is completely hands off!
- 3 cups / 450 grams flour
- 1/4 tsp instant yeast
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 3/4 / 315 grams cups water (room temp)
- Mix flour, yeast and salt together in a large bowl. Add water and stir with a wooden spoon until dough starts to come together. It will look shaggy and kind of weird - don't worry! Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let it sit at room temperature for at least 12, preferably closer to 18 hours.
- When dough is puffed and jiggly, with lots of little air bubbles in it, carefully turn it out on a floured surface. Use a bench scraper or a rubber spatula to get the dough out of the bowl without deflating all that air.
- Sprinkle a little more flour on the top and fold the dough on itself 2-3 times. Loosely cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 15 minutes.
- After 15 minutes, sprinkle a bit more flour on the dough and bring the "corners" of the dough to the center, creating a seam. Carefully pick up dough (use that bench scraper or spatula!) and put it back in the bowl, seam side down. Cover and let rise for 2 hours, or until dough has doubled.
- When ready to bake, place your dutch oven in the oven and preheat to 450. Let pot sit in there for a good 30 minutes after the oven comes to temperature.
- Transfer dough to a piece of parchment paper, seam side up. I do this by just flipping the bowl over onto a the parchment paper. Tap the bottom a few times and then slowly remove the bowl, using your fingers or a spatula to help the dough out of the bowl. Don't work if it's not perfect, the oven will fix it!
- Remove the pot from the oven and carefully lower the parchment paper in. Use the corners of the paper and work quickly so you don't burn yourself! Cover and bake for 30 minutes.
- Remove lid and bake for an additional 20-25 minutes.
- Let cool on a wire baking rack before slicing.
Recipe slightly adapted from New York Times
- A dutch oven is definitely the best option to bake this bread, but any oven-safe deep pot with a lid will do.
- The bread will keep well for days (if you can manage to keep it around that long). I like to loosely wrap it up in the parchment paper it baked in and then keep that in a large ziplock bag. Foil or plastic wrap will work just fine too.