This Tuscan style bread is made with a straight mix method. No need to activate the yeast or make a sponge prior to making this bread. Once baked, the loaf has a deep golden brown crust that softens as it rests and a chewy, moderately dense texture. I personally love using this bread for bruschetta or for my toast the morning after baking. The recipe is adapted from the King Arthur Flour recipe collection.
2 teaspoons dry active yeast
1 teaspoon basil, dried
1 teaspoon thyme, dried
1 teaspoon oregano, dried
1 teaspoon fennel seed, ground
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 ½ cups (12 ounces) warm water
3 ¼ cups (13 7/8 ounces) unbleached bread flour
2 teaspoons olive oil
Combine all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Kneed by hand until incorporated and form the dough into a ball. Cover the dough with olive oil. Cover the bowl with a damp cloth and set aside for 1 hour and almost double in size.
Punch down the dough and then form into a football shaped loaf. Place on a floured pizza peel and let rest for 15 minutes. Score the top of the loaf and place in your Forno Bravo oven.
The hearth should be about 350-375 degrees and the over all oven 450-500. Place loaf in the oven and bake for about 35 – 45 minutes. The loaf is done at 190 degrees internally.
Remove from oven, let cool, slice and enjoy.
Until next week, feast well.