This Dutch Oven Artisan White Bread will turn even a novice bread maker into an artisan bread maker. It’s ideal for enjoying warm with butter, toasted, alongside soup, as a foundation for sandwiches and beyond.
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Dutch Oven Artisan White Bread
There’s nothing like the aroma that fills the house when there’s fresh bread baking in the oven. Even though, when it comes to bread making, it can sometimes seem intimidating when there’s yeast involved. Think of it this way, yeast is a leavening agent that requires a medium of warm water to jump start the blooming process. It’s a leavening. Perhaps a bit less intimidating is baking powder, commonly used for everyday baking of all kinds. Baking powder is used in quick breads like my almond blueberry bread, cinnamon roll bread and Meyer lemon poppy seed bread. Beer is made with yeast, and can also be used in quick breads as a leavening. Pimento cheese beer bread and pull apart Italian herb beer bread are two such examples. To make this sourdough bread, warm water is required to activate the yeast. Think lukewarm, not boiling. I assure you, it is possible to master bread making without a bread machine.
Tips for Making White Bread in a Dutch Oven
What makes Dutch oven bread different from other breads? The process of making bread in this way results in a thicker chewy crust.
- Make sure the yeast you use is not out of date. When you add it to the water, if it doesn’t foam, throw it out and start again.
- As I mentioned earlier, when it comes to the water used to dissolve the yeast, think lukewarm not boiling.
- You can use bread flour or all purpose flour in this recipe.
- When measuring flour always spoon into the measuring cup and level with a knife. Otherwise, the flour an become compacted and throw the recipe amounts off.
- You can let this bread sit on the counter overnight to proof before baking. Not kidding. When doing so, the bread will have a lighter more airy texture as more air bubbles will form the longer it sits. Similar to this homemade ciabatta bread from Baked By an Introvert.
- I use my stand mixer to assist with mixing and kneading the dough. That said, you can always knead the dough by hand for the same amount of time, if you don’t have a mixer with a dough hook.
- It’s best to bake this bread on parchment to avoid sticking. If you don’t have parchment, you should dust the bottom of the dutch oven with cornmeal.
- Use a serrated bread knife to cut.
Dishes to Serve with Artisan Bread
I’m certain, you don’t need a lesson in how to enjoy bread. That said, a big slice of this crusty bread is a spectacular choice with:
- Oven Braised Beef Stew
- Cheeseburger or Chicken Noodle Soup
- Saucy Baked Penne or Beef and Noodles
- Or, butter and fill with homemade Southern Chicken Salad and Gruyere cheese then toast in a skillet for a chicken salad melt.
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Dutch Oven Artisan White Bread
- 1 1/2 cups lukewarm water (105-110°F)
- 1 (1/4 oz) packet rapid rise yeast (equal to 2 1/4 tsp)
- 1 tsp sugar
- 4 cups all purpose or bread flour
- 1 tsp salt
- In a measuring cup or bowl, mix together water, sugar and yeast. Set aside for 10 minutes until foamy.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, sift together flour and salt.
- Make a well in the center of the flour and add yeast mixture. Turn on medium, knead for 5 minutes until pulled away from the sides of the bowl and elastic.
- Oil the bowl and dough, turning to coat. Cover with a kitchen towel and let rise for 4 hours in a warm, draft free place.
- Punch down dough to release air. Fold dough from edges to the center pinch together. Shape into a ball and return to the bowl smooth side up. Cover and let rise 2-3 hours.
- Gently stretch the dough into a round loaf pinching the seams of the dough together underneath. (There's no need to punch the dough down this step.} Dust the top with a small amount of flour. Return to bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.
- 30 minutes into the final rise, place dutch oven into the oven with the lid in place while it preheats to 425°F. Leave in oven for 30 minutes.
- Use oven mitts to remove from oven. Set on a heat proof trivet.
- Remove dough from bowl and place onto a piece of parchment paper. Lift dough with paper, placing into the Dutch oven. Cut 3 slits or an X on top using a sharp knife.
- Bake for 30 minutes with lid in place. Remove lid and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes until golden.
- Remove using parchment paper, rest for 20 minutes then slice and enjoy.