Master Recipe for White-Flour dough: Great coverage in “The Week” Magazine, but there was one little problem…


My book had great coverage in “The Week” magazine on April 18, 2008 (page 30 in the paper version).  But their version of the recipe has you throwing in 4 cups of water, rather than the correct 3 cups (see the fine print on the right, above).  Please use 3 cups, or you’ll have pancake batter!  The correct version of the basic recipe from The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day can be found here (click to view).

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192 thoughts to “Master Recipe for White-Flour dough: Great coverage in “The Week” Magazine, but there was one little problem…”

  1. Before I got your book I had never made bread or pizza dough, now I make it all the time! I love your book and recommend it to everyone who tastes my bread. I especially appreciate how easy it is to put your own twist on the recipe. My husband and I love to add jalapeno and shredded cheddar to the olive oil dough. spread on some cream cheese and your in heaven, all my friends and family agree=) Thanks a bunch for your amazing book!

  2. I just wanted to let you know that I am, as I write, baking a sort of focaccia with red peppers and onions and I’m using up the last bit of a 5 week old batch of master recipe for unbleached all-purpose flour. The one I made last night was scrumptious and turned into supper. Your technique really works and the dough apparently continues to be active and produce delicious bread for even longer than advertised. Thank you for all of your research, testing, and sharing.

  3. Hi! Bread is fantistic!! I received the book for Christmas and we promptly gave up store bread! We’ve developed a nice routine for daily bread. Since I have kids in school, my main focus is sandwich bread. (Not a glamerous dish, but important to moms.) As a single mom with an intense full time job, I am so thrilled to finally find a recipe that works so well for us!

    Here’s what we do: We use the main recipe proportion of 4 2 2 8. So simple, even the 2nd grader can handle it! We also use an artisan flour in 50lb bag, which has a wonderful flavor. Lastly, for a quick and easy loaf, I make 2 of the usual ‘grapefruit’ loaves and put them side by side in a loaf pan. This makes an ideal loaf for little sandwiches. (2 fit perfectly in the little sandwich boxes). Kids love the bread AND the crust! The end pieces are gone before the loaf even cools.

    This is so doable on a busy schedule, can’t say enough about how much we LOVE this bread! (And we haven’t even made it past the 1st recipe, so we have lots to look forward to.)

    Texture and everything is perfect everytime.

    Just wanted to say THANK YOU and encourage other busy mom’s to give it a try!

  4. I have you book and on my second loaf. I used panko instead of corn meal under my bread and it came out great.

  5. In some of your recipes, you say to put in a bread pan. I really like the free form loaves. Is there a reason for not using the stone? Also when I bake the loaves in a bread pan ( pampered chef stoneware), is it okay to bake it on the stone? Can I use the convection oven when baking on the stone?

  6. I purchased the fibrament stone, and it’s supposed to be kept in the oven.
    When I make 2 pans of cookies and cook in the convection oven, should I take the stone out?
    I should mention how much I love your book and bread recipes. My whole family says it’s the best bread ever. I’ve been making bread for at least 35 years, (grinding my wheat), and been making a no knead harvest bread for the last 2 years, but YOUR recipes top all the bread I’ve ever made. I love having the bucket in the fridge, ready to bake.
    Thanks to both of you for a great book.

    1. Hi Marge,

      So glad you are enjoying all of the breads. You can bake any of the breads as free form or in loaf pans, just depends on your preference. You will want to adjust the time if baking free form.

      Convection heat will also work with any of our recipes, but you will want to reduce the heat by about 20 degrees and keep an eye on it to make sure the crust isn’t getting too dark.

      Thanks, Zoë

  7. Hi there! I’ve been using your (2nd) book since February and haven’t eaten store-bought bread since!
    I have a question and I think I saw it once on your blog, but can’t find it. I will be traveling in my camper for 2 weeks and I have a convection oven/microwave in there and I want to prep dough ahead of time. Can I freeze the dough? If so, when do you stick it in the freezer? After the 2 hour rest?

    1. absolutely, can freeze any of our doughs after the initial two hr rest. Easiest to freeze in loaf-sized portions. Jeff

  8. Hi

    Probably a dumb question but does the dough have to sit in the fridge for two weeks before use or is the that the amount of time it will keep in the fridge?

    1. Hi Steven,

      You can use the dough after the initial two hour rise, and then refrigerate it for up to two weeks. The dough is easier to handle after it has been chilled, so you may want to refrigerate it overnight the first time you make a loaf.

      Thanks, Zoë

  9. I just heard about you both and your books this past weekend in Seven Springs. I am SO excited!! Came home and immediately made a batch of bread. Well, it’s Thursday and I just mixed up my second batch. Thank you so much!! Your session on baking bread in 5 minutes was definitely worth going to!!

  10. I have tried the master recipe a few times and simply love the bread! However, I’m not thrilled about the excess cornmeal that gets all over my oven when I slide the loaf onto my stone. I must confess to using an upside down baking sheet instead of a legit peel. Would that help? Or is it just poor technique on my part?

  11. Now this is the reason i want to go to baking school! I love to make stuff like bread the staple of the world! Thanks Jeff and Zoe you make a Norwegian proud.

  12. Thanks for this recipe!


    When you say, “tear off a chunk, shape, rest and bake”….How long should I let it rest? (In a 67-70 degree kitchen)

    Thank you so much!

  13. We keep our home at about 60-61F this time of year. I am not getting a good rise leaving the loaf on top of the frIdge to rise. Suggestions? Thanks!

      1. Master recipe in Artisan Bread in 5, pages 26-31. Early evening today I made a 2.25 lb loaf from a bubbly day 8 sponge (?), let it rise for 1 hr, used my son’s suggestion of pre-heating the oven to 475F and lowering it to 450F after the bread is on the stone and I’ve added hot water to the water pan. Voila! This loaf came out fantastic, pinged for a long time after I removed from the oven and sliced it open a few minutes ago for a taste. Best yet! Great texture, more holey than I’ve had on previous loaves. And a 9″x6″x4.25″ loaf I can use for sandwiches. My son has been baking from the ABin5 and Reinhart books for three years. So…if the latest improvements were the key, I’ll keep baking with those.

  14. This book is the bomb!!!!!So glad I purchased it. Thanks for making bread baking much easier and healthier.

  15. So I went by your master recipe that I got on youtube, and it said 4 cups of water. It is sitting in my fridge now. This is my first attemp to make homemade bread…is the dough ruined or can I save it by mixing in more flour? Right now it is just a gooey mess.

    1. Hi Destynni,

      I’m not sure which recipe you found on youtube, I can’t think of any that would use 4 cups? But, you can fix the dough by adding more flour and allowing it to rest again before shaping and baking. How much flour did you add to the 4 cups of water?

      Thanks, Zoë

      1. 5 1/2 cups whole wheat flour, and 2 cups of all purpose flour. I did add a little honey for sweetness, but not too much.

      2. Destynni: Not sure which YouTube channel you saw that on, but the complete recipe also contains 1/4 cup of vital wheat gluten– it will be much too wet if you leave that out (4 cups of water is correct). Full recipe is in our second book at

  16. What exactly is the purpose of using a pizza peel, cornmeal and water pan in the bottom of the oven? I’ve used the master recipe from both artisan bread in five minutes a day and from pizza in five minutes a day and both I’ve prepared directly on the stone after greasing0 the stone with butter and put that directly in the pre heated oven. The butter seems to work much better than cornmeal, but what difference would it make if I preheated the stone in the oven and used a water pan?

    1. Hi Nephi,

      How is the crust on your bread and pizza? preheating the stone is meant to conduct heat immediately to the dough, which helps in the rising, baking and crust development. I am surprised that the butter doesn’t smoke when the stone gets up to temperature. The cornmeal is used to keep the dough from sticking to the peel, but you can also use parchment paper.

      If you love the bread and the way it is baking the way you are making it, then by all means keep doing so.

      Cheers, Zoë

  17. Hi

    I just tried making the master recipe and have found the dough to be very very wet and sticky. Is this normal? At this stage there is no way I would be able to shape the loaf at all. What should the consistency be?
    Thank you

    1. Should be wet enough to conform to container, but not so wet as to be un-shapable. Just work in a bit more flour and see tips in the book or go through the FAQs page (click the tab above).

      1. Hi Jeff, I made the master recipe dough last Tuesday and i baked it this morning (Thursday). I love the aroma but unfortunately mine turns out to be soft inside but soooo hard to bite outside. Should I add some egg yolk and butter to the dough prior baking? (Since none of that in your recipe). Had i did something wrong? Any suggestion??

  18. jai acheté 2 de vos livre et tres satisfaite.comment reussir un bon pain de seigle et comment reussir a faire un pain au raisins et que les raisins sont bien repartis dans la pate.merci

    1. Joan: So glad the rye and the raisin bread worked well for you. Or does that mean “grape” bread? Wait, do we have a grape bread? Don’t think so, but I’m a bit flustered in French 🙂 Thanks for trying our books, still waiting for someone to to offer to fly us out to Quebec for a class or appearance– love going to Canada and haven’t been for years.

      1. thank’s in canada the flour conyain protein.
        what make to a big bread developped.excuse-me a write englishto little bit.

  19. Hi Jeff & Zoë!

    I just stumbled upon your 5 min bread in the Mother Earth website as I was looking for new bread recipes to try. So many raving reviews so I’m very excited to try it! But I have 2 questions if you don’t mind.

    1. I noticed that your master recipe does not require sugar for the yeast to rise. So I’d like to know, other than taste, are there any other significant differences whether the dough contains sugar or not?

    2. Another question would be, is the above master recipe referring to the ‘full recipe’ that you mention in the FAQ for flour and water? Or is the full recipe is the 6-3-3-13 recipe?

    Last but not least, thanks again for showing us on how easy it is to bake bread 🙂

    1. No need for sugar, yeast can use starch too. 6/3/3/13 is the doubled recipe. Go through our “FAQs” pages for details, or check out our books by clicking on their cover-images above.

  20. I just found your website and book titles while searching for “homemade bread for turkey dressing.” I just ordered “Healthy Bread…” and look forward to receiving it this week. In the event it doesn’t arrive in time for Thanksgiving preparations, could you provide the baking instructions for the Master recipe? Thank you.

  21. I was so excited to find your blogs and recipes. I have one of your books coming in the mail. Started trying the bread recipes I could find and already getting rave reviews. You are both brilliant and wonderful for sharing. Even more, love the Jewish holiday breads, it will be nice to make them myself instead of buying them. Thank you both. I can’t wait to try each and every one.

  22. I am following this recipe and was surprised to read that i have to leave dough after it’s risen for appropriate time, in the fridge? I was thinking I was going to be able toake bagels and then freeze batches.. Can I still just go ahead and do that or does dough need fridge time?

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