‘YouTube’ is a treasure island for many. We can find all sort of tutorial videos. I learned how to make this ‘Plain Flour Rustic Bread’ on ‘YouTube’, however, it was too much of a bother to me. I don’t like weighing the ingredients. I don’t have the required tools, especially the proofing basket and Dutch oven. I wanted to make this bread more EASILY!
So, here is my recipe. You know all purpose Plain Flour is very cheap. The ingredients of this great looking rustic bread cost me only 40 cents!
1 Large Cob
Dutch Oven OR Substitutes
If you have a Dutch Oven, you are lucky. Dutch Oven seems to be the best tool for baking this rustic bread. I used ALDI’s cast-iron casserole pot. You can use an oven-safe metal pot & lid, a high heat oven-safe casserole dish with lid or covered with foil, or something you can cover to trap the moisture.
3 cups Plain Flour
1/8 teaspoon Dry Yeast *about 1g
1 teaspoon Salt
1 & 1/2 cups Warm Water
- Place Plain Flour, Dry East and Salt in a large bowl. Using a whisk, blend Yeast and Salt into the flour evenly.
- Add Warm Water and stir using a stick or strong spatula. It is a very soft and gooey dough. Don’t try to knead it. When the dough comes together, cover with plastic wrap and rest for 30 minutes at room temperature.
- After 30 minutes, it is still very soft and sticky. Wet your hand, grab an edge of the dough, lift and bring it to the centre. Repeat several times. Cover and rest again.
- Basically you need to do this every 30 minutes, 3 to 4 times, before you go to bed. This process would make the dough elastic. Cover with plastic wrap and leave it somewhere safe and it wouldn’t get too cold overnight.
- In the morning, after 10 to 12 hours later, the dough should look bubbly. The dough is still very soft and sticky, but do not wet your hand this time. Dusting the edges of the dough with flour, carefully turn onto a well floured surface and bring the edges to centre to shape into a cob. Turn it over, so that the folded side faces down. Place the dough in a well floured bowl or proofing basket. Cover and rest for 30 minutes. *Note: Do not clean up the floured surface yet as you will need it later.
- Line the bottom of the pot with a piece of baking paper. My very fist bread stuck to the bottom of my casserole pot and never came out!
- After 30 minutes, preheat oven to 240℃ with the pot inside the oven. This means the dough will rest for extra time until the oven gets hot.
- Turn the dough onto the floured surface, so that the folded side now faces up. Take the very hot pot out of the oven, take off the lid, place the dough on the baking paper, put the lid back on, and bake for 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes, remove the lid and bake for 5 to 10 minutes or until nicely brown. Very carefully take the bread out and cool on wire rack.
- *Alternatively, bake on a baking tray, with/without boiling water in an oven-safe dish or pan on the bottom of the oven, at 190℃ for 40 minutes. The below picture is the result of this method.