Easy Homemade Bread (dough)
I will try and make this as approachable as possible. I'm not a professional baker, and every loaf I have ever made turns out differently. My biggest tip for baking bread is not to be afraid. Keep at it, keep kneading that dough, keep getting those hands doughy.
This recipe will make 2 loaves of bread. Or enough dough for 6 pretty good sized pizzas.
Whatever you do not need, store in a plastic container in the fridge to use later.
*The dough will need to rise for at least 1 hour before using, so keep that in mind.
3 cups lukewarm water
6 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (or artisan flour if you have it)
1 packet (2 1/4 teaspoons) yeast
1& 1/2 teaspoon salt
In a stand mixer, add lukewarm water and yeast. Let stand 5 minutes.
Attach dough hook, add in flour and salt, mix until fully combined. Then mix a little more. (make sure flour is fully incorporated and there isn't dry spots on the side of bowl)
Remove dough hook, cover the bowl with plastic wrap (or flour sack towel) and let rise for AT LEAST one hour.
Once the dough has doubled in size, remove it from bowl onto a floured surface.
Preheat your oven to 500F, put a dutch oven in the oven, without the lid.
Knead the dough, or stretch and fold a couple times, whatever you want. Play with it.
Cut in half (or into 6 balls if you are making pizza dough)
Shape each half into a round loaf.
Once the oven is preheated, pull out the hot dutch oven and carefully sprinkle flour in the bottom of it or spray with oil.
Add one of the loaves into the hot dutch oven, cut a design into the top with a lame and put the lid on.
Lower oven to 450F.
Put the covered dutch oven back into the oven and bake for 20-30 minutes covered.
Remove the lid, return to oven and bake for another 15 minutes.
The bread should be brown and crackly on the top. You might have to adjust the time depending on how big your loaf is.
Let bread cool for a few minutes, then remove and let stand on wire rack for 10 minutes before slicing and slathering with butter.