The Best Bread Ever (Food Processor)
- Ready In:
- 4hrs 45mins
- Place the flour, salt and yeast in a food processor fitted with the metal blade. Using an instant-read thermometer, adjust the water temperature so that the combined temperatures of the water and the flour give a base temperature of 130 degrees F using a Cuisinart or KitchenAid or 150 degrees F if using a Braun. With the machine runniing, pour all but 2 tablespoons of the water through the feed tube. Process for 20 seconds, adding the remaining water if the dough seems crumbly and dry and does not come together into a ball during this time. Continue mixing the dough another 25 seconds for a total of 45 seconds.
- Stop the machine and take the temperature of the dough with an instant-read thermometer, which should read between 75 deg. F and 80 deg. F. If the temperature is lower than 75 deg. F, process the dough for an additional 5 seconds, up to twice more, until it reaches the desired temperature. If the temperature is higher than 80 deg. F, remove the thermometer, scrape the dough from the food processor into an ungreased bowl, and refrigerate for 5 to 10 minutes. Check the temperature of the dough after 5 minutes; the dough should be 80 deg. F or cooler by that time.
- Remove the dough from the processor and place it in a large ungreased bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1.5 to 2 hours at room temperature, about 70 deg. F to 72 deg. F. It will increase in volume somewhat, but don't be concerned by how much.
- Turn onto a lightly floured work surface, and shape into a ball. Place the formed loaf on a floured baking sheet, cover the loaf, and let it proof at room temperature for about 1.5 to 2 hours, until it visibly doubles in bulk. The dough will be ready to bake when an instant-read thermometer shows it has reached an internal temperature of 60 deg. F to 62 deg. F.
- One hour before bakng, place a small pan for water on the floor of the oven, put the oven rack on the second shelf from the bottom of the oven, and place the baking stone on the rack. Preheat the oven to 475 deg. F. Transfer the bread onto a peel or onto the back of a baking sheet heavily coated with cornmeal.
- Carefully pour 1 cup of hot water onto the pan on the floor of the oven. Slide the loaf from the peel or baking sheet heavily coated with cornmeal.
- Bake the loaf for 2 minutes. Create steam by adding another cup of water to the pan on the floor of the oven. Continue baking for 18 minutes, until the crust is a dark brown. Or, the bread will be finished when it reaches an internal temperature of 205 deg. F to 210 deg. F on an instant-read thermometer. Cool the bread on a wire rack before cutting.
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