I’m not the biggest fan of winter weather, sure it can be beautiful and my two sled dogs love it, but boy is it COLD! It had been well below freezing here in Denver lately, and even the normal Denver winter sun has been hiding- so I’ve been keeping myself warm by lots of tea, working in front of the fireplace, and lots of baking! This Roasted Garlic and Herb Dutch Oven Bread is incredibly easy to make, is delicious, and makes your entire home smell glorious. The scent of baking bread truly is one of life’s simple joys.
I am using my favorite Le Creuset dutch oven here, but any dutch oven will do. Years ago I started baking dutch oven bread from Le Creuset’s own recipe, but I’ve adapted it over the years! Just make sure that the entirety of your bakeware is oven safe- including the handle! I replaced the stock Le Creuset black handle with a stainless steel one to be able to handle high bread baking temperatures!
Roasted Garlic and Herb Dutch Oven Bread Ingredients
4 Cups Organic Unbleached Flour
1 1/2 Cups Warm Water
1 Head Roasted Garlic (Regular garlic will do, but I love the flavor of roasting!)
2-3 Tablespoons Fresh Rosemary Leaves
1-2 Tablespoons Fresh Thyme Leaves
1 1/2 Teaspoons Himalayan Sea Salt
1 Heaping Teaspoon Active Dry Yeast
1/2 Teaspoon Sugar
Roasted Garlic and Herb Dutch Oven Bread Instructions
1 Combine yeast, sugar, and warm water in a small bowl and allow to activate for 3-5 minutes or until yeast starts to foam.
2 Add flour, salt, and yeast mixture into a stand mixer’s bowl (I’m a KitchenAid gal) with the dough hook attachment. Mix on a medium-low speed until the dough starts to form a ball (2-3 minutes) and then add your garlic cloves, rosemary, and thyme. I like to pop the rosemary and thyme leaves into a mortar and pestle for a quick grind before adding to distribute flavor better!
3 Continue to mix on medium speed until the all ingredients are fully incorporated- 6-8 more minutes. The dough should be smooth and stretchy! To test this you can remove a pinch of dough and check to make sure it can stretch in your hands without tearing apart.
4 Remove the bowl from the mixer and cover with either beeswax or plastic wrap.
5 Let dough rise for at least two hours in a warm place in your home. I tend to like to leave it to rise overnight! (Fresh bread in the morning?! Yes, please.) Dough will double in size.
6 After dough has doubled, lightly flour your work surface and gently knead the bread to help redistribute the yeast. Form into a tight ball.
7 Coat the bottom and sides of your dutch oven with olive oil and place your dough ball in the center. Cover and let rise again in a warm place for about an hour.
8 While dough is rising preheat your oven to 450 degrees.
9 After dough has risen a second time score your bread with a sharp knife. You can make any design you’d like, but I feel like a hashtag is appropriate for this Instagram fan!
10 Drizzle olive oil to lightly coat the bread’s surface, pop on the dutch oven’s lid, and place into the oven.
11 Bake for a total of 45 minutes. The first 30 minutes at 450 degrees with the lid on, and then remove the lid, reduce the oven’s temperature to about 375 degrees and continue to bake for about 15 minutes or until bread is golden brown.
12 Let bread rest for 15-30 minutes to finish baking before serving.
While looking at the steps listed out, Roasted Garlic and Herb Dutch Oven Bread seems like a lot of work, but it is mostly just waiting and the end result is SO worth it! It is always a wonderful treat for guests in town (this loaf I made for my mom!) and a really satisfying way to warm up in the winter months, playing with dough in a warm kitchen! What is your favorite way to warm up when it is chilly outside? I’d love to know!
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