Dutch Oven Bread

I got a food processor for my birthday, this Cuisinart Food Processor to be exact!  I love it I love it I love it!!  But I debated what I wanted to first make with it.  I've read so many recipes with that little line in there, "put all the ingredients into a food processor"... and I'd stop reading and move on.  So which one could I remember being most disappointed that I didn't have a food processor...  I decided on the Paolo's tapenade recipe, an amazing recipe at a place in Georgetown.  Well, if I was making tapenade, I needed something good to put it on.  So I decided to make fresh bread!  And with making fresh bread comes homemade butter.  And all of this just to make some tapenade in my new food processor, hahaha.  So since you'll need to prep your dough before making the butter or tapenade, you're getting this recipe first!  The other two will follow soon, but let's get your dough resting overnight before anything else.

Gather your ingredients!  This is a recipe from Jim Lahey and gone mainstream courtesy Mark Bittman (of How to Cook Everything fame) for amazing bread made in a dutch oven.  You don't even knead the dough, I don't know why I don't make this more often!

PS- understand that the dough needs to rise for 12-18 hours, and there's a little folding about 2 hours before you want to actually bake the bread.  It's really simple, you just need to prep about a day in advance.

3 cups all-purpose or bread flour, more for dusting
¼ teaspoon instant yeast
1¼ teaspoons salt
1 5/8 cups water
Cornmeal or wheat bran as needed
You really don't need to use a mixer for this, I just kind of got lazy...
Combine your dry ingredients.  Slowly pour in your water and stir until combined; dough will be shaggy and sticky.
I accidentally added more water (1 3/4 cup instead of 1 5/8, oops), so my dough was too wet.  I incorporated more flour after the picture below was taken, but I think I should have still added more, lol.  But cover your bowl, with plastic wrap or otherwise, and let it sit at room temperature (around 70 degrees) for at least 12 hours, preferably longer.
The next evening, the dough was totally ready to go!  It was about 20 hours between these two pictures, so sitting out longer isn't a bad thing.

Directions now straight from the recipe website:
"Dough is ready when its surface is dotted with bubbles. Lightly flour a work surface and place dough on it; sprinkle it with a little more flour and fold it over on itself once or twice. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rest about 15 minutes.

Using just enough flour to keep dough from sticking to work surface or to your fingers, gently and quickly shape dough into a ball. Generously coat a cotton towel (not terry cloth) with flour, wheat bran or cornmeal; put dough seam side down on towel and dust with more flour, bran or cornmeal. Cover with another cotton towel and let rise for about 2 hours. When it is ready, dough will be more than double in size and will not readily spring back when poked with a finger.

At least a half-hour before dough is ready, heat oven to 450 degrees. Put a 6- to 8-quart heavy covered pot (cast iron, enamel, Pyrex or ceramic) in oven as it heats. When dough is ready, carefully remove pot from oven. Slide your hand under towel and turn dough over into pot, seam side up; it may look like a mess, but that is O.K. Shake pan once or twice if dough is unevenly distributed; it will straighten out as it bakes. Cover with lid and bake 30 minutes, then remove lid and bake another 15 to 30 minutes, until loaf is beautifully browned. Cool on a rack."

Dough going into the oven, utilizing parchment paper to make the transfer since a super hot pot is not something to mess around with.
Taking the lid off after 30 minutes, and my kitchen smelling totally amazing.
I let the bread cook for another 15 minutes.  Since my dough had been too wet from the beginning, I thought it looked done at this point.  If I had the right amount of flour to water ratio, I might have had more rise in this bread!
Now you just gather your toppings and go for it!  Here's the tapenade I'll be showing you soon.
Oh, and that totally legit fresh butter, that's coming too!  Check out the crisp crust, and the chewy center.  Yum!  Excuse me, I think I need another piece...
The bread, butter, and tapenade joined an already amazing Italian feast of pasta and homemade sauce (with meatballs and sausage) from Eric's dad.  Thank you!!  We loved our leftovers!
A carb lovers dream.  #isbutteracarb?


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