Crusty Italian Bread

Posted on February 21 2015

20150221_165652_resizedThere is nothing better on a cold Saskatchewan day than a bowl of hot soup with fresh bread still warm from the oven.  Today was  one of those days this bread went wonderfully with a pot of Chicken and Wild Rice Soup.

Accessories:  Ankarsrum Mixer with Stainless bowl and roller/scraper
KoMo Grain mill for fresh flour
Quantity:  1 large or 2 average size loaves
Preheat oven to 425 degrees with pizza stone in oven to heat that as well.

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Ingredients:

  • 2 3/4 cups lukewarm water
  • 4 tsp instant yeast
  • 2 cups fresh ground flour
  • 3 3/4 cups white flour
  • 3 tbsp. brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. salt
  • 1 egg white beaten
  • 2 tbsp. sesame seeds

Place water, sugar, salt and oil in stainless bowl.  Add the whole wheat flour and once blended in the yeast.  Blend well at low speed.  Add the remaining flour. Mix on low till blended and them increase to medium speed and knead for 10 minutes.

Cover bowl and allow to rest till double in size, about 30 minutes.   Remove from bowl and press into large rectangle.   Roll up tight and seal the seam.  Place seam at bottom.   Place on parchment paper that has been sprinkled with corn meal.  Brush the bread with eggwhite and sprinkle with sesame seeds.  Allow to raise again till double in size.

After it is done rising. Slash at a 45 degree angle a few times with a sharp knife.   Spritz with water from a bottle and place on the rack. Bake for 3 minutes and spritz again.   Bake for another 3 minutes and spritz again.  Then bake for 4o minutes or till sounds hollow when tap bottom with wooden spoon.  These spritzes with water will result in a very crunchy crust.  Less spritzes for a softer crust.

This bread was baked on a pizza stone.  Can use an inverted cookie sheet if no stone.    Also this bread was to big for my pizza stone so ended up cutting it in half before baking as per photo.  Delicious and something different than I usually make but yummy and will definitely make again.

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