430 g all-purpose or bread flour
1 g instant yeast
8 g salt
345 g water
- In a large bowl combine flour, yeast, and salt. Add water, and stir until blended; dough will be shaggy and sticky.
- Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let dough rest for 12-18 hours, at warm room temperature, about 70 degrees.
- The dough is ready when its surface is dotted with bubbles. Lightly flour a work surface and place dough on it; sprinkle it with a little more flour and fold it over on itself once or twice.
- Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rest about 15 minutes.
- Using just enough flour to keep the dough from sticking to work surface or to your fingers, gently and quickly shape dough into a ball. Generously coat a cotton towel (not terry cloth) with flour and put dough seam side down on towel and dust with more flour, bran or cornmeal.
Cover with another cotton towel and let rise for about 2 hours. When it is ready, the dough will be more than double in size and will not readily spring back when poked with a finger.
- A half-hour before dough is ready, pre-heat oven to 450 degrees. Put a 6- to 8-quart heavy oven-safe covered pot in the oven as it heats.
When the dough is ready, carefully remove the pot from the oven. Slide your hand under towel and turn dough over into pot, seam side up.
Shake pan once or twice if the dough is unevenly distributed; it will straighten out as it bakes. Cover with lid and bake 30 minutes, then remove the lid and bake another 15 to 30 minutes, until loaf is beautifully browned. Cool on a rack.