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Everyday Hearth Bread

1 Tbsp yeast

1 Tbsp sugar

2 cups warm water

1 ½  tsp sea salt (or kosher salt)

1 ½ tsp chopped fresh rosemary or Herbs de Provence or Italian Herbs

½ tsp black pepper

2 Tbsp olive oil

Highest quality high-protein bread flour (you will use about 4-6 cups, maybe a little more) (if you don’t have bread flour, you can use all purpose.  If you use all purpose flour and have vital wheat gluten, add about ¼ cup.  If not, leave it out and it will still turn out fine.)

Kosher salt for the top

 

In a large bowl, or in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine sugar, yeast and water.  Stir in herbs, oil and pepper.  Begin adding the flour 1 cup at a time and mix until a soft dough forms.  Add salt after the first 2 cups of flour.  Continue adding flour until the dough is tacky to the touch, but not sticky.  Knead by hand, or in the mixer until dough is supple and smooth. (about 5 minutes in a mixer or 10 minutes by hand)  Place dough in an oiled bowl and let rise until doubled.  Punch dough down and divide two rounds.  Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment (just a large cookie sheet is fine) and cover loosely with oiled saran wrap or a tea towel (no terry cloth please!).  Let rise until almost doubled.  Spray or drizzle the surface of the dough with olive oil and sprinkle generously with kosher salt. (use a lot, the more the better!)  Bake at 375 for about 30-35 minutes, or until the loaves are golden brown and the interior temperature is at least 190 degrees Fahrenheit.  Cool the loaves on a cooling rack (this is important or the bottoms will get soggy).

Recipe Courtesy of Kristin Trevino