Comfort Food

I LOVE baking bread.  It's my ultimate Comfort Food. Nothing pleases the olfactory nerves better than a boule baking in the oven.  Nothing pleases the tastes buds more than melted butter on a hot slice of bread.  And nothing is better than venting all your troubles onto a couple of pounds of dough. I've had many requests for my recipe for a basic white boule (shown below).  I will divulge it here!  Hope you enjoy it with a healthy slathering of Nutella, or other fine condiments.

Hasselblad 503cw with Carl Zeiss 180mm f4 - f8 @250th 50iso; Mola'd strobe camera right up and close; additional strobe pointed at table in background for a hint of color

Andy's White Boule Recipe

1lb. Bread Flour (you can substitute regular flour, but it won't have the same texture!) 2 tsp. Kosher Salt (1 tsp. can be substituted, if you must) 1 tsp. instant yeast 10 oz. (1.25C) warm water (this recipe doesn't need sugar)

Combine and kneed into a ball. Cover and set aside in a warm place (I place in a slightly warmed oven) until double in size (1-2 hours).

Punch down and roll into a ball.  Let rise again on a rimmed cookie sheet.

Meanwhile a half-hour before ready to bake, place dutch oven in a 500 degree oven (remove knob if it's plastic).

Dust dough ball with flour.

Make two slits with sharp knife across top in cross shape.

Place dough on parchment paper and into a covered dutch oven.

Reduce oven temp to 425 for 30 mins.  (If you skip this your parchment will burn ~ no fun.)

Remove dutch oven cover and continue baking for 30 mins. until deep brown color.  Please be careful with this step!!!  The dutch oven will have a lot of steam!  It's hotter than a bag of popcorn.

When deep and golden colored (15-20 mins) remove to wire rack.

Let cool an hour for the crumb to develop . . . . . or just tear into it.