Anyone can make bread.
If you can whisk and stir, you can bake great bread. Watch the 1-minute video below.
It’s that simple.
Are you ready to start baking?
If you fear yeast, here’s a great place to start your bread baking journey: My Mother’s Peasant Bread: The Best Easiest Bread You Will Every Bake. It’s a no-knead, no-mess, and nearly foolproof recipe. Over the years, many people have attributed this recipe with conquering their fear of yeast, and many have credited it with giving them the confidence to get bread on the table any day of the week.
The single most important step you can take to make baking a simpler and more enjoyable process is to invest in a digital scale. This one, pictured above, costs around $10. Do it.
Highly recommended: a digital scale: Over the years, many people have emailed me with questions regarding the peasant bread recipe. Often the questions center around the consistency of the dough. Sometimes the dough is too stiff; sometimes it’s too loose. These variances arise when we use cups to measure flour—we all scoop cups of flour differently. When we use a scale to measure flour, on the other hand, we all measure the same—512 grams of flour is 512 grams of flour.
If you want consistent results every time, use a scale. And once you start baking by weight, you’ll never go back. I promise. I use my scale to make granola, muesli, brownies, portioning chocolate chip cookie dough, etc.
A few more things:
- Instant yeast is another game changer. It will simplify all of your bread-baking endeavors. No more “proofing” or “blooming” yeast. SAF is my preference.
- Two 1-quart Pyrex bowls are recommended for the peasant bread recipe and many of the other bread recipes in my cookbook, Bread Toast Crumbs.
- King Arthur Flour: It’s what my mother used; it’s what I use. If you like using bread flour, by all means, use it. If you like using locally milled or stone-milled flours, go for it. I’ve been using a lot of local flours recently, and I love their earthy flavors.
When you have success with the peasant bread recipe, know that you can now adapt it however you wish. In addition to its simplicity, the beauty of the master peasant bread recipe is its adaptablity. Want to add herbs, nuts, seeds, spices? Want to use whole grain flours? Want to add cheese? Want to make pizza? Pissaladière? Focaccia? Sandwich bread? Monkey Bread? Brioche? Cinnamon-Swirl Bread? The first chapter of my cookbook, Bread Toast Crumbs, includes 40 variations of the simple no-knead peasant bread.
But Bread Toast Crumbs isn’t just about baking bread. Because once you see how easy bread baking can be, you’ll be baking bread all the time. The second and third chapters of Bread Toast Crumbs are filled with recipes that will find delicious purpose for the many heels, nubs, and crumbs from the many loaves you bake. See photos, watch more videos, and find recipes from Bread Toast Crumbs here: Cookbook News & Notes
Bread Toast Crumbs
*A 2017 IACP Nominee for the Julia Child First Book Award*
With praise from Dorie Greenspan, Jim Lahey, and David Lebovitz, Bread Toast Crumbs is the definitive bread-baking book for a new generation. But this book isn’t just about baking bread—it’s about what to do with the slices and heels and nubs from those many loaves you’ll bake.