Breads that are cooked in the hearth have a thick crust that makes a more delicious loaf of bread. You may think it's hard to bake this type of bread, but it's actually a simple process. It's also fairly inexpensive to make homemade bread, although it does take some time to finish. The secret is to use steam during the baking. Surprise your family with a couple of delicious smelling, crusty loaves of bread the next time you bake.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- 6 cups self-rising flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 packages of dry active yeast
- 2 tbsp white granulated sugar
- 2 cups warm water
- 1 cup milk
- 4 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 bread pans
- Large metal pan
Place the flour in a large bowl and set aside.
Put the yeast and sugar in another large bowl and add 2 cups of very warm water. Stir the yeast until just mixed and leave it alone. Wait 10 minutes or until the yeast gets foamy.
Combine the olive oil, milk, butter, salt and 2 cups of flour into the bowl with the dissolved yeast and stir. Soften the butter before adding by either putting it in the microwave for about 30 seconds or leaving it out on the counter for about an hour.
Add the rest of the flour to the yeast mixture in amounts of 1 cup at a time. Stir after each addition of flour until you have bread dough.
Flour a flat surface, like the counter, table or cutting board and turn the dough out on it. Knead the dough until it is smooth or for about 10 minutes. Lightly oil a large bowl and place the ball of dough in it. Cover loosely with the lid and let rise in a warm area for 90 minutes. Next, oil two bread pans with olive oil.
Punch the risen dough down and separate in half. Pull both pieces of dough until they are a little longer and then place in the two bread pans. Let rise for another 90 minutes. Now is the time to preheat the oven to 232 degrees Celsius. Place one rack on the lowest shelf and one as close to the middle of the oven as possible.
Sit a large metal pan or a baking pan on the bottom rack and fill with water. When the bread dough has doubled in size in the bread pans, place in the oven. The steam from the pan of water on the bottom rack will help to give the bread a thick crust. Bake for 20 or 30 minutes or until the loaves are a golden brown and then remove from the oven. Let sit for about 20 minutes before slicing.
How to Bake Crusty Bread
Tips and warnings
- Be careful when putting the bread pans in and taking out of the oven because the steam could burn you.