Q: Do I have to use an enamel covered cast iron pan?
A: NO. You can use anything that can take the heat. The following have been used that I know of:
Clay pots with lids, Pizza stone with a bowl to cover the bread, insert from a crockpot, pyrex baking dish with a lid, stainless steel pot with a lid, baking dish covered with aluminum foil, old cast iron dutch oven.
Q: Do I have to use unbleached flour?
A: I always use unbleached flour. You can try bleached flour.
Q: Can I use self rising flour?
A: I don’t know. I would just stick to all-purpose.
Q: What size is my pan?
A: My smallest pan is 5.5 quart. You can use as small as a 3 quart.
Q: What type of yeast do I use?
A: I use SAF instant yeast. Any yeast should work.
Q: Why is my bread turning out flat?
A: I don’t know. You could try using less 1/4 cup less liquid. Or add a bit more flour. Make sure you dough appears to be dry when you first mix it. It will have more moisture during the rising time.
Q: Can my dough sit out longer than 18 hours? Does it HAVE to be between 12-18 hours?
A: I have let some dough sit as long as 24 hours and the bread was beautiful.
Q: Have you tried Gluten-free?
A: No. I’m still waiting for someone to venture into the realm of Gluten-free. If you try it, let everyone know.
Q: Do I have to grease or oil the pan? Will my bread stick?
A: No you don’t need to grease the pan. I have never had the bread stick when using a cast iron pot. I haven’t tried anything else. The best way to be certain that the bread won’t stick is to form the loaf on a sheet of parchment paper and lift the bread into the pan using the sides of the parchment. Leave the paper in the pan. It’s won’t burn. When the bread has baked, just lift the sides of the parchment out of the pan. Voila!
Gluten Free photo sent from Star:
Star’s recipe for GF bread: Hi, I just wanted to let you know that I love this bread so much and have made it many times with great success. Today was the first time I tried to make it gluten-free. I thought I’d share my experience for anyone who is wondering. I made absolutely no changes to the recipe. I simply used all purpose gluten-free flour (which already contains the correct amount of xanthan gum; more specifically, I use Jules Gluten Free Flour) in place of regular all purpose gluten-free flour. I made no other changes. No changes to amounts. I probably left it in the oven about 7 or so minutes longer. Very crunchy on the outside. I didn’t let it brown much at all because felt it would get too hard — it was already very crunchy. The inside was not as I would have expected. It’s almost more raw-like. That’s probably not the right word. It was more gooey? — Just not as dry-like/bready….it was just different. But it tasted very good. And tasted like the crusty bread made with regular white flour. Didn’t taste any different for being gluten-free. It also smelt just as good. It was smaller. In fact, I really don’t think it rose. I wonder if you could just by-pass that step when you use gluten-free flour (I’ve heard gluten-free breads don’t really rise) of having it sit overnight and just pop it in the oven right away. But it was very good and everyone loved it. And it got eaten just as fast as the regular version.