March 11, 2021
Michael Smith’s Real Bread
“Over the past year, we’ve baked more bread than ever before, and my daughter Ariella and I have shared many a baking rally. She’s learned how to bake and has mastered her own signature loaf from my base recipe. The secret is understanding that the best bread takes time, says chef and owner of The Inn at Bay Fortune Michael Smith. “The key to an addictive loaf of rich, hearty goodness isn’t long, laborious kneading that kids can’t really master but, instead, an easy stir and an overnight rest for the living dough. With time, water and flour naturally form a strong, elastic dough that captures the breadth of the living yeast and rises into tender, chewy bread.”
Yield: Makes 1 large loaf
1. In large bowl, whisk dry ingredients together, evenly distributing finer salt and yeast throughout coarser flours. Pour warm water over flours, swirling gently, until evenly distributed and eventually absorbed.
2. Stir vigorously with handle end of wooden spoon, until full, moist dough ball forms. Stir, roll and knead to gather loose flour in bowl.
3. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and rest on counter, 6 to 8 hours, or overnight. Long, elastic gluten strands will automatically form as raw gluten is activated by water and time. Dough will breathe and double in size.
4. Sprinkle risen dough and work surface with flour. Remove dough from bowl. Dust with more flour. Knead and roll into tight ball. Transfer to large 9″ x 5″ loaf pan. Spray with kitchen oil to moisten surface. Rest second time. In 2 hours or so, the dough will double again.
1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Turn on convection fan, if you have one. Bake risen dough until bread is deep golden brown and delicious, 45 minutes.