The Easiest Bread Recipe Ever

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Who doesn't love bread?!  I've literally never met someone who didn't love it, but I'm sure there's some of you out there that don't like it.  I know there are so many who can't have bread, which is so incredibly sad.  In which case, you may not be interested in this ground breaking recipe.   

My latest obsession is The Great British Baking Show.  However, I'm always left feeling a conflict of inspired and frustrated after I binge a few episodes.  Now don't get me wrong, I love to cook, but baking has always been a struggle for me.  It’s so scientific and exact, AND time consuming, that I usually throw in the towel and give up on whatever it is I’m making - unless it comes from a mix or a box (sad!)  However, my momma’s simple, country white loaf bread recipe is my saving grace.  It’s so incredibly easy it’s ridiculous.  It’s perfect for lazy bakers, like me!  

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Easy Country White Loaf

Ingredients:

3 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon yeast

1.5 cups warm water

Extra salt for seasoning

Directions:

In a large bowl, stir together the flour, salt, sugar, yeast, and water until you start to see the dough form.  Cover with cling wrap, and let it sit in a dry, room temperature environment to proof for 12-24 hours.  (I leave mine for 24 hours, just to give it extra proof time!)  

Preheat your oven to 450 degrees.  While the oven is preheating, you can begin to turn out your dough.  Once the dough has proofed, take about 3 tablespoons of flour and sprinkle over your work surface.  Begin to turn out the dough, covering with flour as you go.  The goal is to remove the "stickiness" of the dough as much as you can.  Rest for 30 minutes. 

In the meantime,  place whichever pan you're using to cook the bread inside the preheated oven.  You can use a cast iron skillet, a bread pan, whichever you desire!  Let the skillet or pan rest inside the preheated oven for 30 minutes.  Slash an "X" on the top of the loaf with a knife.  After the skillet/pan/whatever you chose has been heated, place your dough on a piece of parchment paper, and put it right in the already heated skillet, inside the oven.  If parchment paper isn't your thing, make sure that your pan is coated well oiled so that the bread doesn't stick.  

Bake your loaf in the oven for 30 minutes, covered with tinfoil.  Uncover after 30 minutes, bake for an additional 10 minutes, or until it starts to brown.  Cool, slice, serve, enjoy!

Margaret Perkins