Rustic round loaf bread that is easy enough for beginner bakers.
6 cups flour
2 tsp active yeast
1 tbs salt
2 3/4 cups water
drizzle of oil
Combine all dry ingredients in your mixer and with the paddle blade, turn it on the lowest setting to get things mixing. Add the water until everything is combined.
Let sit for 20-40 minutes. This allows the flour to fully absorb the water and lets the yeast start to wake up.
With the dough hook knead the dough in the mixer for 5 minutes. The dough should stick only to the bottom of the bowl but clear the sides. If it is too wet and sticking to the sides, add a sprinkle of flour. If it is too dry and clearing the bottom, add a splash of water, about a tablespoon at a time.
Coat the top layer of the dough with a small drizzle of oil. Just enough to prevent drying out. Let the dough sit for about an hour until it has doubled in size.
Knead the dough in the mixer for 2 more minutes. Lift the hook and drizzle a small amount of oil around the edges of the dough, lifting the sides until you can cleanly lift the dough out of the bowl.
On a floured surface, divide the dough into 4 pieces and thinly coat in flour. Form the pieces into round loaves by tucking the sides under making the top smooth. Place them on the cookie sheet that they will be baked on with a piece of parchment paper. They will expand as they rest and again in the oven so give them plenty of wiggle room. Set the loaves out to rise for one more hour.
While the loaves are rising preheat oven to 450 ° score the top of each loaf. Place a pie pan with water on the bottom rack, and the loaves above it. Bake for 20 minutes until the crust is a nice golden brown.
Take them out and let them cool. When you first take them out the inside has not finished baking yet. Letting it sit and cool allows the bread to finish on the inside and the crust soften up on the outside.