Follow this recipe for a classic loaf, or try one of the simple variations below. For our top tips and tricks to mastering the art of Dutch Oven Bread, look here!
- 4½ cups (563 grams) all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon (9 grams) kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon (1.5 grams) active dry yeast
- 2¼ cups lukewarm water (105°F to 110°F)
- ⅓ cup (50 grams) plain yellow cornmeal, divided
- In a large bowl, stir together flour, salt, and yeast. Add 2¼ cups lukewarm water. Stir with your hand until a sticky dough forms. Cover bowl with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel; let rise at room temperature overnight or up to 24 hours.
- On a floured work surface, pat dough into a circular shape. (This is a wet dough.) Fold four edges in toward center; turn dough smooth side up. Sprinkle with flour, and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise at room temperature for 2 hours.
- Place a 4- to 6-quart cast-iron Dutch oven in cold oven. Preheat oven to 500°F. Sprinkle top of dough generously with cornmeal. Using a large spatula, turn dough over; sprinkle with remaining cornmeal.
- Place dough in preheated Dutch oven. (Use a wooden spoon to gently push dough into bottom of pan, if necessary.) Cover and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake 15 to 20 minutes more. Let cool completely on a wire rack.
In the first step, stir 1 cup grated Gruyère cheese, 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary, and 1 teaspoon (2 grams) ground black pepper into flour mixture. Continue as directed. After first 30 minutes of baking, sprinkle bread with ¼ cup grated Gruyère cheese.
Multi-Grain Topped Bread
Prepare dough, and let rise as directed. Stir together 3 tablespoons (27 grams) raw sunflower seeds, 1 tablespoon (5 grams) old-fashioned oats, 1 tablespoon (10 grams) dried minced onion, 1 tablespoon (4 grams) wheat bran, 2 teaspoons (6 grams) coarse sea salt, 1 teaspoon (3 grams) poppy seeds, 1 teaspoon (3 grams) sesame seeds, and 1 teaspoon (3 grams) flax seeds. Sprinkle over bread dough (instead of cornmeal) before baking.
In the first step, stir together 3 cups (375 grams) all-purpose flour, 1½ cups (195 grams) whole-wheat flour, salt, and yeast. Stir in 1 cup (128 grams) dried cranberries, 1 cup (113 grams) chopped pecans, and 1½ teaspoons (3 grams) ground cinnamon; continue as directed.