Light-As-Air Seed Bread
This light-textured loaf with crunchy crust is perfect to serve with soup or stew.
Weigh your flour; or measure it by gently spooning it into a cup, then sweeping off any excess. Combine all of the bread ingredients, mixing and kneading to make a smooth, slightly sticky dough.
Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl, cover the bowl with plastic wrap or your favorite reusable wrap, and set it aside to rise for 1 hour; it should just about double in bulk.
Lightly grease the bottom part of a long covered stoneware baker, about 14 1/2" x 5". (For other pan options see "tips," below.) Sprinkle it with cornmeal or semolina.
Transfer the dough to a lightly greased work surface, and form it into a smooth 13" log.
Place the log in the pan, brush the top with water, and sprinkle with Artisan Bread Topping, The Works Bread Topping, or your favorite seeds.
Cover the pan with its lid, and let the dough rise for 45 to 60 minutes. Check it occasionally to see where it's at; when ready to bake, it should have started to fill the pan side to side, and crowned about 1" over the rim.
Just before putting the loaf into the oven, slash the top several times, if desired. Hold your knife at a 45° angle to the dough's surface, and slice quickly and decisively, about 1/2" deep.
Place the pan in a cold oven, and set the oven temperature to 425°F. Bake the bread for 30 minutes, remove the lid from the pan, and bake an additional 5 to 10 minutes, or until the bread is golden brown and its interior temperature measures 190°F on a digital thermometer.
Remove the bread from the pan, and allow it to cool on a rack. Store any leftovers, wrapped in plastic or your favorite reusable wrap, at room temperature.
To bake this loaf in an Emile Henry Glazed Long Covered Baker, double the ingredients and bake the bread for 35 minutes with the lid on, and 5 to 15 minutes with the lid off.
This loaf is a perfect candidate for garlic bread. Simply prepare the topping for garlic bread found in our recipe for Ciabatta, Pan Bagna, & Garlic Bread, and spread it onto thick slices of the seed bread. Arrange the slices on a baking sheet, and toast them in a preheated 400°F oven for 5 minutes, until they're just becoming golden.
If you wish to bake this bread in a standard 8 1/2" x 4 1/2" loaf pan, simply shape the dough into an 8" log, place it into the lightly-greased pan, and top it with seeds. Let the loaf rest for 45 to 60 minutes. Preheat the oven to 375°F 20 minutes before you're ready to bake. Slash the loaf, if desired, then bake it for 30 to 35 minutes until golden brown and a digital thermometer inserted into the center of the loaf reads 190°F.