Overnight Rustic Bread

The entire family LOVES this bread.  The dirty little secret is it only takes 5 minutes of my time before bed to mix up the dough and then another 5 minutes to get it ready to cook.  The crust comes out the perfect crusty, crunchy goodness just right for a bread bowl.  The inside stays nice and moist perfect for dipping in soup and sauces.  (UPDATE: It works just as well with 100% Whole Wheat Flour!)

Overnight bread cooked in small ramekin without lid to make dinner roll.
Overnight bread cooked in small ramekin without lid to make dinner roll.

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. Add dry ingredients to a large bowl and whisk together.  If you want you can add all sorts of mix-ins at this point.  A handful of shredded cheddar cheese and chopped fresh herbs is always a winner.  I have also done cinnamon and raisins for a sweeter bread.
  2. Add water and mix. Dough will be sticky. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit 12-18 hrs. Do not refrigerate.
  3. An hour before you want to eat the bread, preheat oven to 450F. Once preheated add pan with lid into oven for 30min (or ceramic bowls for 20 min if you are making smaller bread bowls or rolls).
  4. Meanwhile dump dough out on floured surface and form into ball. If you want bread bowls divide into 2-4 smaller balls.  Allow it to rest covered with a warm damp rag while pot is heating in oven. Once pot is done warming take it out, remove lid, dump in dough and replace lid and pot into oven.
  5. Cook for 30 min.

If you want bread bowls divide the dough into 2-4 smaller balls depending on the size of bread bowl you want.  If I am cooking one large loaf I use my ceramic crockpot insert which has a glass lid with no plastic to cook the bread in.   If you have a Le Creuset Enameled Cast-Iron 5-1/2-Quart (Dutch) Oven it would be perfect for this.  I have never been willing to shell out the cash for one but if anyone wants Christmas ideas for me I will take any color 😉  For the bread bowls I experimented and it doesn’t matter if you have a lid or not.  They turn out just fine without a lid.  I baked mine in ceramic cereal bowls.  Experiment and enjoy.  I have tried stainless bowls vs ceramic.  I have never had a problem with the bread sticking in ceramic but it does tend to stick in stainless.

Overnight Rustic Bread used as a bread bowl.
Overnight Rustic Bread used as a bread bowl.

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