Basic Italian Bread

Basic Italian Bread

Meal type Appetizer, Bread
By author Alina Eisenhower

Ingredients

  • 40oz Bread Flour
  • .75oz instant yeast
  • .75oz salt
  • .75oz sugar
  • 24oz Luke warm water

Directions

1. Place the flour, yeast, sugar and salt in the bowl of your stand mixer and mix on low speed until combined.
2. Add the water - mix on low speed for 1 minute and medium for 6 min. Dough should form a ball and pull away from the sides of the bowl.
3. Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl and spray the dough with a thin coating of cooking spray. Wrap the bowl with plastic wrap and set aside to proof in a warm, draft-free place for 45 minutes.
4. Punch down the dough and turn forming it back into a ball, cover and let rise another 45 minutes or until doubled in size.
5. Remove the plastic wrap, punch down and divide into 2 rectangular pieces.
6. Flatten the dough with the heel of your hand. Roll the dough up tightly, sealing the seam well after each roll. The dough should be elongated and oval-shaped, with tapered and rounded (not pointed) ends.

7. Preheat the oven lined with a pizza stone to 425 degrees F. Alternately, an inverted baking sheet may be used in place of a pizza stone.

8. Place the dough (seam side down) on a baker's peel heavily dusted with semolina flour, or cornmeal, or alternately on an inverted baking sheet. Allow the dough to proof, loosely covered with a damp towel, for 30 minutes, or until doubled in size. Using a razor blade or sharp knife, score 3 (1/4-inch deep) slashes across the top of the dough at a 45 degree angle.

9. Spray the dough generously with water from a water bottle and place in the oven on the baking stone. Immediately close the oven and bake for 3 minutes. Open the oven door and spray the dough again with the water bottle. Close the oven door and bake for an additional 3 minutes before spraying the dough for a third time (the spraying of the dough will ensure a crisp golden brown crust). Bake the dough for 35 minutes or until a hollow thud is heard when you tap the bread on the bottom. Allow the bread to cool slightly before serving.
  • Publisher: Mercury Media and Entertainment
    508-479-1171
    domenic@mercurymediallc.com
  • Foodies of New England
    Box 380
    Sturbridge, MA 01566