With about 5 oz of flour, fresh yeast, salt and water you can conjure up a great white bread with a normal electric oven.
The recipe is designed to bring a crispy, warm white bread to the table within 12 hours. The recipe is especially suitable for people who want to spontaneously make a simple homemade bread.
The world’s simplest bread – simple white bread with fresh yeast
- 1 bowl with approx. 25 cm diameter and 8-10 cm depth
- baking paper
- Aluminium foil (alternatively a cast iron pot or roaster with lid)
- Razor blade / sharp knife
- 17.70 oz wheat flour
- 0.11 oz fresh yeast
- approx. 300 ml lukewarm water
- 2 tsp. salt
- Dough production (approx. 15 minutes) At the beginning, you add the flour to the bowl. Then dissolve both the yeast and the salt in the lukewarm water by stirring the water vigorously with a spoon. Now pour the warm water-salt-mixture into the bowl with the flour. Mix all ingredients to a mixture and knead either by hand or with a kneading machine for at least 4 and at most 15 minutes. The long kneading process will give your bread a soft and fluffy crumb.
- Dough rest (8-10 hours) So that you can consume the bread half a day later, the dough must rest in the bowl at room temperature for about 8-10 hours. Cover the bowl with a damp cloth to prevent the surface from drying out. The dough will increase relatively quickly during the resting period.
- Stretch and fold the dough (optional)
If you can set the time, you can "stretch and fold" the dough in the meantime. The first time after 3-4 hours, the second time after 6 hours. This step is not necessary, but it will help to build up the structure of the wheat and thus the structure of your bread.
- Form the dough (approx. 5 minutes) Take the dough out of the bowl (this works particularly well with a dough card) and place it on a lightly floured work surface. Now, depending on your baking tin, either form a ball or roll an elongated sausage. The easiest way to shape the dough is to flatten it with your hands, then fold it up like a towel and roll it up from one end. Repeat this flattening, folding and rolling 2-3 times. Your dough will get more and more volume and firmness at the same time. If you want to make a ball at the end, fold the two ends of your dough roll down to make a ball. If you want the dough to have an elongated shape, press the ends slightly under the dough. In any case the dough piece should give some resistance, then it is tight enough. Then lay out your baking tin with baking paper or place the dough piece on baking paper in a pot. It is important that the dough does not come into direct contact with the metal, because it would bake firmly. To prevent the crust from breaking open uncontrollably during the baking process, you should scratch the surface of the dough piece with a sharp knife or razor blade.
- The last dough rest (approx. 1 hour) Let the dough rest in its later baking tin for about 1 hour. Cover the dough with aluminium foil. The cover prevents the dough from drying out and protects the following baking process from the direct heat from above. If you do not want or cannot use aluminium foil, you can also use a cast iron pot with lid instead of a baking tin.
- Preheat oven (approx. 30 – 40 minutes) 30 – 40 minutes before baking you must preheat the oven to 440 °F.
- Baking process (approx. 45 – 50 minutes) Push the cold baking tin or the cold pot on the middle rail into the preheated oven. After 30 minutes remove the aluminium foil or the lid. Your bread will have already risen well. Let the bread brown in the pot for about 15 – 20 minutes without covering. After 45 – 50 minutes your bread should be ready. You can check this as in the following step with the knock test.
- Check whether the bread is really ready with the knock test If your bread is really completely baked, you can do it with a knock test. To do this, take the supposedly ready-baked hot loaf of bread with oven cloth (!) in your hand and then tap the underside with your fingers. If the clay sounds dull when you knock, you should bake the loaf for another 8-10 minutes on the hot baking tray or grate and then repeat the knock test. If the clay is hollow when tapping, then the bread is ready.
- Leave bread to cool (at least 1 hour) The finished bread should cool well, at least 1 hour. It is best to place it on a grid so that the moisture can escape underneath the bread.