4.11.16

dutch oven bread!

Last Saturday night I baked up two boules of bread for the Lord's Supper the next morning at church.

Our leaders had a heart to really feast, taste, and feel the Lord's supper, and teenie tiny wafers and a thimble of wine aren't as visceral or symbolic So now it's glasses of wine and big chunks of freshly baked bread, and it's beautiful. I love that they care how we receive this sacrament and how much they desire for it to help us reflect on the gospel. It was such a lovely, raw service with people truly feasting together, confessing things to one another, comforting each other, encouraging one another with the gospel, lots of hugs and prayers. It felt like such a family act, whereas sometimes the Lord's Supper can be very individualistic.

I shared a picture of one of the boules (not quite a loaf of bread because of it's circular shape) on Instagram, and a few of you asked for the recipe, so here it is!


A little note: the way I make this bread requires a stand mixer and a dutch oven. Both are investments to your kitchen but they will last you forever, and I use mine each several times a week. And Le Creuset dutch ovens (and their whole collection) is 20-30% off right now and the Kitchenaid stand mixer is $150 off, too. It's a good week for kitchen shopping, I guess! You don't need Kitchenaid or Le Creuset, though. Any stand mixer or dutch oven will do :)

DUTCH OVEN BREAD

4½ cups flour (I use ½ whole wheat and ½ unbleached white)
2 Tablespoons yeast
2 Tablespoons sugar
2 cups warm water
1½ Tablespoons salt

Combine the yeast and the sugar in the bottom of the bowl of a stand mixer and then pour the warm water over it (this is called proofing). Whisk it slightly, and let is rest for 10 minutes or so.

In a separate bowl mix 3 cups of the flour with the salt.

Add the flour mixture one cup at a time to stand mixer, with dough hook attached. The dough will be sticky, don't panic! Add in the rest of the flour slowly until the dough completely comes together in a ball. Let the mixer knead the dough for a few minutes. Then dump the dough onto the counter and continue to knead for about five minutes, or until the dough is smooth. Kneading is basically playing with it with your hands and re-shaping it. It's fun and very kid-friendly and impossible to mess up, I promise.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees with the Dutch oven inside.

Place the dough in a greased bowl and cover the top with a towel. Let is rise for 30 minutes.

Take out the ball of dough, that should have risen. Lightly coat both the bottom and the top of the loaf with flour. Carefully remove the Dutch oven from the oven and grease the bottom of the dutch oven with olive oil. Drop the dough in the center of the Dutch oven. Cut a couple slits or an X on the top of the dough - I forgot to in the picture above.

Cook for 30 minutes covered. Then take off the lid and cook for another 5 minutes, until the top is golden and crunchy looking.

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