Artisan bread in minutes was a thing years ago, creating a sensation and bringing fresh-baked bread to ordinary home cooks who didn’t have all day. Then, Jim Lahey, the owner of NYC Sullivan Street Bakery, made things even easier, with the technique of using a covered dutch oven to create a crispy crust in an ordinary home oven.
This version tweaks his basic recipe a bit. I add a little rye (or whole wheat) flour so the flavor isn’t so white and omit several steps (like the flour-dusted tea towel and cornmeal base). It’s still insanely easy (even easier, really) and is guaranteed to impress you and your guests every time.
The only catch is you need to plan ahead. I like to mix it up at night and let it rest until I’m ready the following day as it needs 12-24 hours to be ready to bake. Other than waiting for the yeast to do its thing, there’s only a few minutes of actual hands-on cooking time.
Truly, there is nothing like fresh bread to make your kitchen smell divine and your belly feel satisfied.