Shepherd's Bread
  • 1 package yeast (or 1 Tbsp, if you have your yeast in bulk like I do)
  • 2 cups warm water
  • 1 heaping Tbsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 6-7 cups flour
  • cornmeal (for sprinkling)
  1. (makes 2 loaves)
  2. 1 package yeast (or 1 Tbsp, if you have your yeast in bulk like I do)
  3. 2 cups warm water
  4. 1 heaping Tbsp salt
  5. 1 Tbsp sugar
  6. 6-7 cups flour
  7. cornmeal (for sprinkling)
  8. Pour the warm water into a bowl. Mix in the yeast and sugar; wait 5 or 10 minutes until it gets frothy. Then add the salt, and gradually add the flour, mixing until it starts to form a ball. Turn the dough out onto a floured surfact, and knead for 3-5 minutes. If you're bread-experienced, you'll know when it's ready; if not, just go by the time and you should be fine.
  9. Once the kneading is done, grease a bowl or other deep container (you could use a cooking pot if you had to) and put the dough in. Cover with plastic wrap or a damp towel. (I actually use a dough rising bucket with a lid, but I realize most people don't have that.) Let it rise until it doubles, which will probably take 45 minutes to an hour, depending on the temperature of your kitchen and the enthusiasm of your yeast.
  10. Take a baking sheet and sprinkle it liberally with cornmeal. Cut the dough in half, shape into balls, and place on the baking sheet. (If you have a baking stone, you can put the dough on a pizza peel at this point instead of using a baking sheet.) Let the loaves sit for 5 minutes or so. While you are waiting, get some water boiling (a cup or so is fine).
  11. When the loaves are ready, slash an "X" on the top of each and put them in the cold oven. Pour the boiling water into a pie pan or skillet and put on the bottom rack or floor of the oven. Shut the door and turn the oven to 400 degrees. Bake for 40-45 minutes.
  12. This is good for sandwiches, but is at its absolute best about 5-10 minutes after removing from the oven. Just rip a piece off (no knife necessary), slather it with butter, and eat.
  13. edited because I just realized all the ingredients were bunched together