- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp active dry yeast
- 1 ½ tsp sea salt
- 1 ½ cups warm water 105 degrees F
- Combine the flour, yeast, and salt in a large bowl and stir to combine.
- Add the water and mix until the dough forms a ball.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap (sprayed with cooking spray) and a damp tea towel.
- Let dough sit covered at room temperature for 18-24 hours.
- After 24 hours (or at least 1 hour before you want to serve) preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
- Place a 4 Qt Cocotte (or a 2.4L baking dish) with a lid in the oven while it is preheating. (Note: Readers have used a 5 qt. dutch oven with success).
- While oven is preheating, transfer the dough from the bowl onto a floured surface.
- Form the dough into a ball, adding a few TBS more flour if needed. The dough should still be slightly loose. Then cover it with a floured towel while the oven is preheating. (Important note: The dough ball will be loose and "floppy." That is how it should be as this is a very moist bread which is what makes it so irresistible. You will not have a firm ball, it will look a little flat).
- Carefully remove the hot baking dish from the oven. Remove the lid and spray the dish with cooking spray or line it with parchment paper.
- Gently put the dough ball into the baking dish so it’s evenly distributed.
- Cover and bake for 30 minutes.
- Remove the lid and bake for an additional 15 minutes, or until the loaf is golden brown.
- Remove the loaf from the baking dish and let it cool on a rack before slicing. To keep it warm, cover with a tea towel.