• 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
• ¼ teaspoon instant yeast
• 1½ teaspoons salt
• 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
• about 1-1/4 cup warm water (bath temperature)
1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, yeast, salt and sugar. Slowly add the warm water as you are stirring the flour mixture. Using a rubber spatula, stir the mixture until all of the water is incorporated into the flour. The mixture will be very moist.
2. Cover the bowl with a dry towel or with plastic wrap. Let the dough rest at warm room temperature for about 8-10 hours.
3. The dough will be very airy, pillowy and covered in small bubbles. Add a light layer of flour on your work surface and gently invert the bowl to slowly release the dough onto the floured surface. Add a light layer of flour on top of the dough ball.
4. Gently grab one end of the dough and fold it over onto itself. Repeat this folding motion 3 times from different corners of the dough ball, but making sure to keep the dough to its round shape.
5. Continue shaping the dough into a ball shape. Oil the inside of a 3-quart dutch oven or 3-quart oven-safe pot. Gently place the dough ball inside the dutch oven, seam side down. Sprinkle a light dusting of flour on top of the dough.
6. Cover the dutch oven with a towel and allow it to rise until it becomes double in size, about 2 hours.
7. About 15 before the final rise is finished, pre-heat the oven to Convection Bake 450° F. It’s important to remember to pre-heat the oven so the bread can bake in the oven at it’s full 450° F temperature.
8. Gently cut two crisscross slits across the top of the dough with a small, sharp paring knife, being careful to not pull or drag the knife on the top of the dough which can deflate the dough.
9. Put the pot with dough in the oven and bake the bread for about 25-30 minutes or until the bread becomes a dark, golden brown. The rich dark crust color gives a very nice crusty texture.
10. Remove bread from oven and cool it on a wire rack. The wire rack will make sure the bread retains it crusty texture on the bottom. Allow the bread to cool for about 25 minutes before serving.