Saturday, August 17, 2013

Crusty Bread Love

Today it was rainy and cold... it felt much more like October than August and so it seemed like my best shot in months at a bread baking day.  Besides, there's a recipe I've been holding back for just such circumstances.  It's one of those recipes that sounds almost too good to be true.  There's only 4 ingredients, no kneading and the promise of an amazing rustic crust.  I mixed it up this morning and left it to sit the requisite 12 hours.  It just came out of the oven.  Of course, I couldn't wait to take a taste!

Here's a link to the recipe I followed for Super Amazing Easiest Bread.

Yes!  It is as crusty as it looks and it cracked open like that all by itself!!

What I loved about this bread, besides the fact that it was beyond beginner level easy, was the crust.  OH MY GOODNESS!!!  The crust is amazing!  While I think I will get a sourdough starter bubbling away again and use it for bread, I am definitely going to be baking it using this method.

Just learning how to get that amazing crust was worth the effort of making this bread today!

Seriously!  The crust is that good!!

The texture, or crumb, of the bread is nice!
And I sliced it just moments after pulling it from the oven.
In the linked recipe, she mentions that she reduced the salt from 1 3/4 tsp down to 1 tsp.  I'd put it back to 1 3/4... I didn't think it tasted like it had nearly enough salt.  It was flat like that first generation no sodium bread from 30 years ago.  More salt would probably take care of most of what I thought it was lacking in the flavor.  [Edit:  It did seem extraordinarily flat tasting when it was fresh from the oven, but when I had more this morning it is actually pretty darn good bread as is.  I admit it... I rushed to judgement!] The addition of other flavorful ingredients would also be a tremendous boost in taste.

Maybe I will try this recipe one more time and add some parmesan cheese, Italian herbs and garlic powder.  A bit of finely chopped olive salad and some shredded sharp cheddar would also make a delicious variety of this bread.  And so would just some dried rosemary, then serve it with a little bowl of good olive oil and balsamic vinegar (aka Italian butter) for dipping.

And... I'm sorry, sweetheart, but we WILL be buying some covered clay baking pans.  Not sure where we're going to find them yet, but find them we will!  My one covered casserole dish that's big enough to hold a loaf just isn't going take care of all the baking I want to do.

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