PREP TIME: 10 MINS (+ COOLING AND 9 HOURS RISING)
COOK TIME: 1 HOUR
MAKES 1 LOAF (18 SLICES)
500ml (2 cups) lukewarm water (see Cook’s Tip) ¼ tsp dried yeast
500g baker’s flour, plus extra
3-4 rosemary sprigs, leaves picked 2 tsp sea salt
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 Put the water in a large bowl and sprinkle over the yeast. Stir well. Add the flour, rosemary leaves and salt. Mix until well combined. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and set aside for
8-12 hours to rise.
2 Once the mixture has risen, brush the inside of another large bowl with the olive oil and dust with 1-2 Tbsp flour. Carefully tip the bread into the floured bowl and dust the top with more flour. Cover again with plastic wrap and set aside for 1 hour to prove.
3 Preheat oven to 180°C (fanforced). Place a large casserole dish, small roasting tin or cake tin in the oven to heat up. When it’s really hot, take it out of the oven and quickly tip in the dough. (The dish or tin should be hot enough that the dough will sizzle when it goes in.) Sprinkle with a little more flour and bake for 45-60 minutes or until the bread is risen, golden and, if you tap the crust with your knuckles, it sounds hollow.
4 Turn the bread out onto a wire rack and set aside to cool for 10-15 minutes before slicing. It’s delicious served warm with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
Make sure the water is warm enough to activate the yeast – it is brought back to life at 37°C (human blood temperature). If you don’t have a thermometer, the water should feel just warm, not hot, to the touch.