I have found (actually not true....my uncle discovered this bread and for that I will always be grateful to him) the best bread EVER and I must share it with the world. Seriously, I have no reason to ever buy bread again. This bread is as good as any bread you could buy in a bakery and certainly better than any you would buy at the grocery store.
It's dense, yet moist; soft on the inside, yet a crunchy crust on the outside. Perfect on its own, along side a bowl of soup, or for a tasty sandwich. I am telling you - perfection!
And it gets better....it is SO easy. I am not exaggerating. You will spend 3 minutes on this bread and have warm hot bread waiting. It is mixed and baked all in one pot. Hence no clean up! The one disadvantage is that it does need to "proof" overnight. I know....those of us who seek instant gratification struggle with this step but if you plan according, and bake the bread while you still have some left, its not a big deal.
Here is the even better news. The original recipe (which is a Jacques Pepin's one pot bread recipe) was made with all white flour. I, however, having loved this bread SO much and needing to eat it every day, decided I needed add at least a couple redeeming ingredients. So I substituted 1/4 of the white flour with whole wheat flour and added about 1-2 tablespoons of flax seed. It was AWESOME!
See for yourself....
Here is the recipe - (And just so I don't get sued....I feel the need to reiterate credit for the original recipe* and the method of baking, all goes to Jacques Pepin. Love ya Jacques!)
In a 3 quart non-stick sauce pot, mix 2 1/4 cups lukewarm water, with 1 tsp active dry yeast and 1 tablespoon salt. Add 3 cups white flour, 1 cup whole wheat flour and 1 to 2 tablespoons flax seed. (I was not precise about how much I added.) Mix until well combined. Let sit covered for 1 hour. Scrape the sides a bit and push down gentle on the mix to deflate it a bit. (To be honest, this step is called for in Jacques version but I forgot to do it with my version and it did not seem to have mattered.) Refrigerate 12-14 hours. Bake uncovered at 425 for 1 hour. (Cover it after 45 minutes if getting to brown.) Let cool 5 minutes. Take it out of the pot and let cool.
*The original recipe was all white flour and contained no flax seed.
Enjoy! And to all you no-carb, low carb people......moderation is the key.....do NOT deprive yourself of this bread.