I've made this bread several times and it is utterly amazing and wonderful. In fact, I just put a loaf in the oven 5 minutes ago. The only "bad" thing about this bread is that you have to start it 12-18 hours in advance, so you have to plan ahead. It is so good, that my kids no longer want me to buy bread from one of the many great bakeries we have in the San Francisco Bay area, but beg me to bake this instead. The crust is like the best French bread I have ever had anywhere and the crumb is full of fabulous holes with a wonderful texture. Bakery bread can't compete when this is fresh out of the oven which it will be in about 40 minutes.
This is similar to a cold rise bread I tried once - that turned out fantastic - but this is def. easier. I just started mine - was trying to time it so I could cook it on Thanksgiving morning, but the turkey will take up the space. I don't have a covered pan - going to use my trustworthy cast iron pan, and maybe a tin-foil top. Lynne On Nov 22, 2006, at 12:02 AM, Zara Haimo wrote: <Snip>
<Snip> I use a deep cast iron pan. I have a lid to a stainless pot that fits reasonably well and works fine, but an aluminum foil top would work well too. Just remember to preheat the pan. You just dump the dough in - tonight my dough was still so wet it didn't hold its shape and I had to sort of pour it in, but it formed a nice round loaf in the pan with a fantastic crackling crust and a terrific internal texture. This is the best and easiest bread I have ever made and I bake a lot of bread.
O.K., I'm waiting for my first morning coffee, and you are making me SO hungry. I thought my dough last night seemed heavier (than I expected). Doesn't seem as though it did anything overnight (my yeast has been fine all along). On the other hand, it's pretty cool in here (there's heat, of course, but this old house is drafty). So I'll be patient. Yes, I'll make sure I heat that cast iron pan real good. If this works out, I'll look for a deep one with a cover - I LOVE cast iron. Lynne On Nov 22, 2006, at 1:56 AM, Zara Haimo wrote: <Snip>