Rustic Italian Bread

 
Ingredients
  • 2 cups of lukewarm water (you may not use all of it)
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour, or (you can use Farina Tipo 00, Oat flour blend, or Wheat flour)
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons of active dry yeast or a packet
  • 1 Tablespoon of Olive Oil
  • 1 Tablespoon of Sesame Seeds (optional for the top)
Preparation Instructions
  • Preheat your oven to 375 degrees
  • In a bowl, add 1 cup of warm water and dry active yeast and let it stand until creamy (about 8 minutes).
  • In another bowl add flour, salt, and sugar. After 8 minutes take the yeast and give it a mix then add it to the flour mixture, mixing it in with a fork until sticky, add the additional cup of water a little at a time and continue to form it into a ball. Note: You may not need all of the water. Just make sure the dough is a tad bit moist. Add a little bit of flour at a time to get it to a less sticky consistency.
  • Next, sprinkle with a bit more flour and work it with your hands to make a ball. It’s not necessarily kneading per say. You are just rolling and tucking in gently to get a smooth ball
  • Take the dough and gently mold it into a smooth but firm ball with an elastic feel.
  • Put the dough back into the bowl and cover with a kitchen towel and let it rise. This could take anywhere from 30 minutes to 1 hour. It all depends on the temperature in the house and the humidity.
  • Once it rises take a little more flour, pat it down and roll it into a ball again.
  • Put the dough back into the bowl and let it rise 1 more time. When you let the bread rise twice it really makes for a better bread but if you are short on time then don’t worry about it.
  • After you are done with all the rising, you will take the dough and put it on the parchment paper that is on a baking tray. The dough should be elongated and oval-shaped, with tapered and rounded (not pointed) ends.
  • Take about 1 tablespoon of olive oil and coat the dough with it. This will make it nice and crunchy on the outside.
  • After you rub it down with olive oil you can sprinkle a bit of sea salt or sesame seeds on top.
  • Next, score the top of the dough with a sharp knife at a 45 degree angle.
  • Bake 30 minutes, until you hear a hollow sound when you tap the bottom.
  • Allow the bread to cool slightly before serving, and enjoy!

*www.forthefeast.com

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