Rustic Italian Bread
Makes 1 loaf of bread
  • 2 cups of lukewarm water, approximately
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2½ teaspoons of active dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • Garnish: 1 tablespoon sesame seeds, sea salt
  1. Preheat oven to 375º.
  2. In a small bowl, stir together 1 cup warm water (105º to 110º) and active dry yeast. Let mixture stand until mixture is foamy, about 5 minutes.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, salt, and sugar. Add proofed yeast mixture to flour mixture. Mixture will be sticky.
  4. Next, add the additional cup of water, a little at a time, mixing until the dough comes together. You may not need all of the water. The dough should be slightly moist, but not sticky.
  5. Knead dough into a smooth ball; do not over-knead.
  6. Place dough in lightly greased bowl, cover, and let rise until nearly doubled.
  7. Pound, then let rise a second time.
  8. Shape into an oval and place on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper.
  9. Brush dough with olive oil for a crusty finish. Garnish with sesame seeds and sea salt, if desired.
  10. Score bread at 45º-angle several times; bake at 375º for 30 minutes.
Recipe by TeaTime Magazine at