Mike Hoye,
May 2007
Updated January 2010

This recipe is designed to get you freshly-baked bread with an absolute minimum of effort. It takes about ten minutes of work, spread over two days. You need:

Last thing you do before you go to bed: Mix the three cups of flour, yeast and salt in a large bowl, then add a three or so cups of water, mixing until evenly goopy. It shouldn't hold together in a ball like typical dough; add water a bit at a time until it's just flour goop. If there are some specific herbs you like and have to hand you can throw a generous pinch of them in, but they're not required. Cover loosely with a plastic bag that does not touch the mixture, and set aside overnight.

When you get home from work the next day, turn the oven up to 450F and put the pot in with it; preheating the pot is key. Wait 20 mins while both the stove and pot heat up. Lift the goop bowl about three fingers off the counter and drop it once or twice.

When the oven is ready, put the pot on the stovetop, and sprinkle half of the handful of flour around the bottom of the hot pan. Gently pour the now-risen goopy mixture out of the bowl, using a spatula to peel it off the sides, into the hot pot. Sprinkle the rest of the flour along the top of the bread when this is done.

Put it back in the oven with the lid on for 30 minutes. Take the lid off, and let it cook for another fifteen minutes. If not nicely brown at this point, leave in for another five minutes or so, otherwise remove from the oven.

The bread should come out of the pan easily at this point - if not a little delicate spatula work will set it free. Allow it to cool ten to fifteen minutes, then serve.