EASY No Start Sour Dough Artisan Bread
Do you love the artisan breads in the gourmet sections of the nicer bakeries, but, hate the high prices? The taste of sour dough is fabulous. But it requires a ‘start’ which is a combination of ingredients that is stored and used from over and over; and you have to remember to use it and add to it to keep it fresh and best for baking and cooking with. Well, this recipe solves all of these issues magnificently! It also costs just pennies to make this amazing gastronome bread. And, it is SO EASY,anyone can do it! The taste of sour dough develops on its own without a ‘start’! You are going to love this and make it over and over and over and over…believe me, you will. To make sure you are successful, I am giving you lots of pictures and tutorial, though it really is simple, so let’s get cooking.
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Easy NO Start Sour Dough Artisan Bread
3 cups flour
1/2 tsp. yeast (Saf-Instant is my favorite)
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 ½ cup water, the temperature of a baby bath
8″ or 10″ dutch oven with lid OR 2 1/2 – 3 quart oven safe stoneware casserole dish with tight fitting lid OR 2 1/2 – 3 quart enamel cast iron casserole dish with tight fitting lid
Directions: Stir the flour and spoon into a dry measuring cup. The reason for this, is that flour settles in the bag or a container. This adds air back in and measures correctly. Scrape off excess flour with the back of a table knife for accurate measurement. In a large glass bowl combine the flour, yeast and salt; stir until well combined.Add in the warm water that is the temperature of a baby bath.Mix well with the spatula.
*IF adding additional ingredients, this is the time to do it.
For this add in 1/2 cup chopped Oven Roasted Sundried Julienned Tomatoes with Roasted Garlic (click HERE for the recipe) and 1 cup grated mozzarella cheeseCover the bowl, whether using the original recipe, or the one with the additional ingredients, tightly with tin foil and let sit on top of the fridge, on the counter or in a warmish place for 12-18 hours.The dough will turn into a wet, bubbly goo substance. Do not touch or stir. This is what the recipe looks like after 8 hours just to give you an idea.If you are in a hurry or if your house is less than 60 degrees you can drape a towel over the top to hold in the heat.
After 12-18 hours, sanitize and clean your counter top or cutting board. Dust it lightly with flour.Pour the dough out of the bowl onto the flour.Dust the top of the dough with flour. Turn it over a couple of times just so it forms a ball – well sort of – do NOT knead the dough.When adding in the sun dried tomatoes and cheese it will have more moisture and will require a bit more flour as your gently work it into a ball.
One-half hour before you are ready to bake, place the dutch oven, stoneware casserole dish or enamel cast iron casserole dish in a COLD oven. Turn it on to 450 degrees and allow it to stay for 30 minutes while oven heats up; thoroughly heating the oven or dish you are using, along WITH the lid.AFTER 30 minutes CAREFULLY with hot pads remove the heated lid from pot.Gently, using a dough scrapper to remove the dough from the counter, drop the ball of dough (that has been sitting, covered for 30 minutes-2 hours) into the heated and very hot pot.Carefully, with hot pads replace the lid and bake at 450 degrees for 30 minutes.
Very carefully remove the bread with a metal turner/spatula. The bread will sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.Cool on racks.Enjoy with butter or balsamic vinegar and olive oil. This bread is so good in countless ways. Try it as a toasted cheese sandwich, in a panini, with slices of meat, or whatever your creativity comes up with. Make some up today and give as a gift too!
Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2015
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For more on the topic of the value of Salt and our importance:
A Pinch of Salt, click HERE
A Mother’s Shadow Novel, click HERE