sketch of Bob above the Easy Bread recipe.

EASY CRUSTY BREAD

3 c. unbleached all purpose flour
1 3/4 t. salt
1/2 t. instant or rapid-rise yeast
1 1/2 c. water

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, salt and yeast. Add water and mix til a shaggy mixture forms. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and set aside for 12-18 hours (overnight works better). Preheat your oven to 450°. When the oven has reached 450°, place a cast iron pot with a lid in the oven and heat the pot for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, pour the dough onto a heavily floured surface and shape into a ball. Cover with plastic wrap and let set while the pot is heating up. Remove the hot pot from the oven and drop in the dough. Cover and return to the oven for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes remove the lid and bake the bread an additional 15 minutes. Remove the crusty bread from oven and place on a cooling rack to cool.

Easy Crusty Bread recipe is published in our July, 2013 Menu Minder, Issue #357.