Rustic white bread

I started making bread about 2 months ago. This is the first white rustic bread I have successfully made in a dutch oven; I was overjoyed. The aroma is amazing, and the bread is soft on the inside with a lovely thin crust. The mouthfeel is similar to a baguette.

The dough is quite wet and sticky. To work the dough, I used a plastic dough scraper to pull at one end and fold it over the top to the other side of the dough, rotating the bowl after each fold. I did this for about 2 minutes.

I followed Bruno Albouze’s (a French chef) method of proofing, letting the dough rest for 4 hours, deflating every hour, and shaping the dough to proof in a banneton basket. You can view his method in the video below.

 

Because the proofed dough was still very sticky and soft, I placed parchment paper over the basket, put a plate on top, and flipped the basket over. I then transferred the parchment paper with the dough into a preheated dutch oven. In my tabletop electric oven, it took 50 minutes to bake the bread – 30 minutes with the lid on and 20 minutes with the lid off.

 

The finished product – a beautiful rustic bread with natural splits. Nothing beats freshly baked bread.

Although wet /high hydration dough can be hard to work with, it produces bread with a lovely thin crust that is soft inside.

Original bread recipe from valentinascorner 

Rustic White Bread

  • Servings: yields 1 loaf
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cup water, warm ( 33 – 40° C / 91 – 104° F)
  • 1/4 cup whole milk, warm
  • 1 ½ tsp salt
  • 2 tsp oil (Canola or Olive oil)
  • 2 tsp granulated sugar
  • 2 ½ tsp active dry yeast/instant yeast
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Steps

  1. Preheat the oven and dutch oven (with the lid on) at 230° C/ 446° F for 30 minutes.
  2. Add yeast and sugar in the warm water, stir to mix, and cover with a towel for 5 minutes to activate the yeast.
  3. Sift flour in a large bowl, add in salt, sugar, oil, and warm milk, stir to combine.
  4. Add the water with yeast in the flour mixture and mix with hand until you get a wet sticky dough.
  5. Use either a dough scraper or wet hands; pull one end and fold it over the top to the other side of the dough. Continue this for 2 minutes. Dip mixing hands in water to prevent dough from sticking to your hands. You can rewet your hands a few times during this process. Do not add flour.
  6. Cover with a tea cloth and let it rest for 4 hours, deflating the dough every one hour.
  7. After letting the dough rest for 4 hours, gently tip the topside of the dough on a floured surface.
  8. Draw up the edges to the center to create a disc shape and transfer to a well-floured banneton basket to proof for another hour.
  9. Place a parchment paper over the basket, then put a plate on top and flipped the basket over. Carefully transfer parchment paper with the dough into a preheated dutch oven.
  10. Bake for 30 minutes with the lid on, then remove the lid and bake for another 20 minutes or until the loaf is medium brown all around.
  11. Transfer the bread to a wire rack and let it cool down to room temperature before cutting.

 

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