Easy Homemade Bread
This bread is made in the traditional shape known as a boule. Once you’ve mastered this no-knead recipe, play with the shape of the loaves you create. Try an oval or even a long, lean baguette.
Serves: 24Hands-on: 15 minutesTotal: 3 hours 35 minutesDifficulty: Medium
- 2 Tbsp. active dry yeast
- 1 tsp. sugar
- 3 1⁄2 cups tepid water
- 6 3⁄4 cups plus 2 Tbsp. unbleached all-purpose flour, divided
- 1 1⁄2 Tbsp. salt
- 2 Tbsp. coarse semolina flour
- In a large bowl, combine yeast, sugar, and water. Set aside for 7 to 10 minutes. Gradually stir in 6 1⁄2 cups flour and salt until a dough starts to form. If the mixture seems a little dry, add up to 1⁄2 cup tepid water until the dough comes together. It should feel smooth and not too sticky. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, leaving a small opening to allow the gases to escape. Let the dough rise a minimum of 2 hours or overnight.
- Sprinkle 1⁄4 cup flour on a work surface. Divide dough into three pieces and work with one at a time. Stretch the dough outward and then fold under. Repeat this for 2 to 3 minutes. You should end up with a smooth round ball of dough. Repeat with remaining dough.
- Sprinkle the semolina over a piece of parchment paper the same size as a pizza stone or baking sheet. Place the boules on the parchment, leaving room in between to allow the dough to rise. Sprinkle remaining flour over the boules. Let rise for 45 minutes. Use a sharp knife to cut three shallow slices into the top of each boule.
- Preheat oven to 500°F. Set a pizza stone or large baking sheet on the middle rack to preheat. Add hot water to a broiler pan and place it on the top rack. Transfer the boules to the pizza stone or baking sheet and bake for 5 minutes. Reduce the temperature to 450°F and bake for 20 minutes or until the boules are golden. Carefully remove them from the oven and allow them to cool to room temperature before serving.