Ingredients Jump to Instructions ↓

  1. 1 cup bread flour (King Arthur is best) 3 Tbsp fresh ( untoasted ) wheat germ 3/8 tsp instant yeast (Red Star's Quick Rise or Instant Active Dry, or Fleischmann's Rapid Rise) 1 1/4 tsp honey 1 1/3 cup water, at room temperature (70º-90º) RSS TfF Subscribe via Email

Instructions Jump to Ingredients ↑

  1. In your mixer bowl, combine all the sponge ingredients, and whisk by hand (or with whisk attachment on lowish speed) until very smooth, to incorporate air, for about 2 minutes. It should be the consistency of batter. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and set aside while you make the flour mixture. Flour Mixture 2 cups bread flour 1/2 tsp instant yeast In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour and yeast. Gently scoop the flour mixture on top of the sponge, covering it completely. Cover tightly with plastic wrap, and allow it to ferment at room temperature for 4 hours. The sponge will probably bubble up through the flour, this is fine. Mixing With the dough hook, mix on low speed (#2 on a Kitchenaid) for about 1 minute, until a rough dough is formed. Scrape down any bits of dough, recover with plastic wrap, and let sit for 20 minutes. (This is an important step — called an autolyse — and allows the flour to absorb the water more evenly, among other things). Sprinkle on the dough: 1 1/2 tsp table salt Knead the dough on medium speed (#4) for about 7 minutes. The dough should be very elastic, smooth, and sticky enough to cling slightly to your fingers. If it is still very wet, add a little flour (1 Tbsp at a time). If it is not at all sticky, spray on a little water and continue to knead for another minute.

  2. t Rise Place the dough in a large bowl that has been sprayed lightly with cooking spray. Gently press down the top of the dough, and spray lightly with cooking oil. Cover with plastic wrap, and allow the dough to rise until doubled in size, about 45 minutes (or in a cold kitchen, up to 1 hour 15 minutes).

  3. d Rise (optional if you run out of time, but definitely ideal) Scrape the dough onto a lightly floured counter and press gently into a rectangle. Give it one “business letter turn” (yes, just like you’re folding a letter), round the edges, and return it to the bowl, seam-side down. Let rise until doubled again (it will already be fuller than it was in the first rise), about 45 minutes to 1 hour. Shaping Turn dough onto a lightly floured counter and gently press down to flatten slightly. Pulling the edges toward the center, flip the dough over (seam side down) and continue to tighten the top of the round by pushing the dough under the ball. There’s no easy way to write this, without illustration — and there are many ways to shape bread. I found


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