peasant bread

How to Make a 2-pound Loaf

In Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day and Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day we suggest baking a 1-pound loaf and give detailed instructions for making this smallish bread. It seems like a nice size loaf for a family of 4 to eat in a day. On some occasions you may want to bake a larger loaf and it requires a few adjustments to our recipe. Here are step by step instructions for baking a 2-pound free form loaf.

2 pounds pre-made, refrigerated dough (the timing will be different for fresh dough that has not yet been chilled)

peasant bread

Form the dough into a ball (here is a video on how to form wet dough), then place ball of dough on piece of parchment or a cornmeal covered Pizza Peel.

loosely cover the ball with plastic wrap. For the larger loaf we have to let it rest longer, so we don’t want it to form a tight skin or it won’t rise as well. Allow to rest at room temperature 65-70°F for 90 minutes (2 hours if using doughs made mostly with whole grains).

Preheat the oven with a Baking Stone set on the middle rack, to 450°F as read on an Oven Thermometer. Have a roasting pan on the bottom rack.

The dough will have risen slightly and probably spread sideways. It should no longer feel chilled or tight and will shake like set jell-o when you shimmy the loaf on the parchment.

Slash the loaf with 1/2-inch deep cuts.

Slide the loaf onto the baking stone. Add one cup of water to the roasting pan and bake the bread for 45-50 minutes.

Remove the golden brown loaf, take off the parchment and let it rest on a cooling rack for about an hour. The loaf may still be gummy on the inside if you cut into it before the hour is up.

Cut with a very sharp Bread Knife.

141 thoughts to “How to Make a 2-pound Loaf”

  1. Maybe I’ve missed something – think I’ve got all your books right now – but have you ever spent much time looking at how to apply these techniques to singles? The long-life refrigerator dough approach seems to work well, but even a 1 lb loaf can be a bit much to use while it’s still fresh.

    Something like buns seem to work much better than bread in such cases, but the books seem to focus very little on them. A lot of it seems to come down there to how to get a less tough crust. As noted in one of the few places in the books to deal with buns – hamburger and hot dog buns specifically – the crust is a killer.

    Short of the slather-the-top-with-some-sort-of-oil, what other approaches can I use to successfully “ruin” my crusts? I’ve been trying to use the list of things to ensure a crisp crust and essentially reversing the instructions, but I’m wondering if there are some better strategies or better ways to integrate this.

    1. Dave: More on the site about rolls and buns:
      Cloverleaf buns (for St Patrick’s Day):
      Kaiser Rolls:
      Thanksgiving rolls/buns:
      Kaiser Rolls:
      “Baguette” buns:

      But those really don’t answer your question.
      Leave out the steam from the oven… consider fat sources right in the dough… use challah or brioche or buttermilk dough from the books as the basis for this. Milk instead of water…

      1. Thanks for all the feedback.

        I’ve been trying to use more dough, but also to keep things relatively healthy. e.g. the olive oil doughs I often turn to (got the first two books in hardcover, but the third as an ebook unfortunately… I’ve discovered that as a result of my copy of the flatbreads book being an ebook I never use it). I’m not sure how well olive oil compares to challah or brioche for softness.

        I’ve thus far only ever made the brioche dough as part of desert-style thing – never otherwise. One of the reasons I tend to avoid it is one of the things that likely is pretty common about single people… I’m interested in a very long shelf life. Olive oil dough doesn’t really seem to be affected much by the length of storage, but the brioche and challah doughs only last a few days in the fridge – making it difficult to use a sufficient volume of dough to cut the time costs down enough. (My freezer space is at a great premium most of the time… typically can’t fit much in it).

        If I swap milk in in place of water, should I use (a) equal volumes? (b) equal weights? (It’s so much easier just to throw a container on the scale rather than measure everything). Would this affect the shelf life of the dough much?

      2. Hi Dave,

        You can measure the milk as you would the water, either by weight or measures. You will want to store the dough for no more than 7 days, unless there are eggs in the dough, then 5 days is max.

        Thanks, Zoë

    2. If you have the first book, there is a recipe for a bread made with a softer crust. I have used that recipe for making hamburger buns, which turn out very well. As far as having too much bread at a time, I usually take some to work, there are always people willing to take the extras. You can also use whatever is left over from your loaf, turn it into bread crumbs or even a bread pudding.

      1. Thanks for the suggestion to use the Soft American-Style bread recipe for hamburger buns. I promised to make homemade buns for a work function soon, so I will definitely be trying this recipe. About how many ounces for an average size hamburger bun and how long do they need to rest and bake? Any tips would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.

    3. For small “today-only” loaves, I make the “batard” from the 2nd book (HBin5) and slice it in half for a sandwich. I also don’t mind slicing the (baked) bread, refrigerating it in a ziploc bag for up to a week, and then toasting it with cheese on top.

      Near the end of the dough life I tend to make Naan, and a small one usually ends up rounding out my dinner just fine.

  2. I recently bought Healthy Bread and it seems nice. I’ve been making bread in a similar manner for a number of years, but I always use diastatic malt unless I’m making 100% white flour bread. Have you used diastatic malt? If so, what were your experiences? Why don’t you discuss it in your books? I’ve found it to be indispensable for whole grain breads and one can’t make authentic semolina bread without it.

    1. Reba: Diastatic malt contains an enzyme that encourages yeast activity, but since we store out doughs so long, any differences in the initial rise become irrelevant– everything catches up.

  3. @Dave — Okay, I’m a random person, but…

    I’ve been making focaccia bread in small rounds — about the size of hamburger buns — and then splitting them for sandwiches or snacks. I usually make a bunch of these at once for the family (they go stale slower in individual rounds), but it would be easy to make just one or two at a time. Soft crust.

  4. As a mom of 6 hungry kids (2 of which are teens), THANK YOU!!! I have been trying to get this right for some time. I had given up and just made 2 one pound loaves. It’s easier to handle one loaf.

    1. Hi Cathie,

      I am just entering into the teen years with my boys and can tell that the 1-pound loaves will be too small soon enough! 😉

      Cheers, Zoë

      1. Thank you both for all the continued assistance you provide to us. I wanted to make a 2# loaf with my refrigerated dough this morning and here is all the info I need! I am very grateful,


      2. I have a family of seven and large appetites. They prefer the sandwich loaves. I’ve done the american soft crust and buttermilk. Can you help with adjusting these recipes to a larger loaf?

      3. I just measured from the bottom and it’s 8.5×4.5×3. I’m new to baking and dimensions are not listed on the pan. Also, can I bake the master recipe in a loaf pan rather than free form? Thank you!

      4. Hi Connie,

        In that size pan you really only want to bake a 2-pound loaf, so just follow the instructions in this post. You can use the Master recipe in a loaf pan or as a free-form bread.

        Enjoy, Zoë

      5. The instructions on this post are for a 2lb free form master recipe. I’m not sure how to change resting and baking time for the loaf recipes. The small loaf is 350 for 45 min. (Buttermilk and soft american) If I’m doing a 2lb master recipe in a pan do I follow the same instructions given here for the free formed? Thank you!

  5. hi guys, this looks great, as usual. are you sure about the temp and length of time? i seem to still have the problem that anyone over 350F ends up with incredible (almost unedible) thick crust.

    one time i make it and it works, 8 times it’s thick as a brick. even changed the cooking setting to “bake”. same result.

    no idea what to do about it.

    1. Hi George,

      Yes, I just made this loaf and the timing and crust were just right. What do you mean by …setting to “bake?” Do you have an oven thermometer to check the accuracy of your oven temperature?

      Thanks, Zoë

      1. hi zoe, i have said this in another post, but yes, i have a thermapen and an oven probe therm and my setting was on Bake. even when i set it at 375, it takes over an hour to bake and it does not even reach 210F.

        if i put the oven temp at 425, the crust will blacken before the inside is 100F. and i just have the manufacturer inspect the oven, so i know it’s accurate.

        what’s the INTERNAL temp that your loaves reach?

        i am getting discouraged that i can never have a great loaf of bread.

      2. that’s what i was trying to explain in the first post, but did not do a very good job.

        before i was doing “convection bake”, but i have switched to straight “bake”. still not good. every 5-6 loaf comes out ok, but 90% comes out with crust hard as a rock.

        i put the temp in the bread and try to get it to around 208F before i let it cool.

        very depressing because i can not make good bread consistently.

      3. George: I can’t explain your poor crust results, so sorry. Might want to try flatbread in this particular oven, bakes quicker and the intention is a soft crust. Pita breads to try appear in all three of our books; remind me which one you have?

      4. i used the recipes from the website for boule and have used the master recipe almost exclusively.

  6. Wow! Perfect timing. I just said I wanted to try a larger loaf. My husband eats a lot of bread, and I don’t want to heat up a 450 degree oven every day. I did a 2# and a 1# this afternoon just to use up my dough. I’ll let you know how the 2″ turns out.

    This might be the answer I’ve been looking for.

  7. I’ve had good luck with 2 pound loaves by shaping the dough into a baguette-inspired oblong. I use the same resting time, oven temp and baking time as the master recipe for 1 pound loaves. I get a wonderful crumb and just-right crust.

  8. I just have to say…I LOVE your “5 minute bucket bread” as I call it! I actually found the 1 pound loaves too small – my husband goes crazy for it! I have been making 2 lb loaves for quite some time now and they are perfect for us. Where we live, I didn’t have to change a thing with the recipe or baking time.

    This past week, I was teaching some young women and their leaders from church how to make this bread and after they formed and baked their own loaves from my bucket of pre-made dough, they had to learn to make the dough themselves (it goes much faster teaching this way). After they mixed it up, I just had them stick it in the fridge since I knew I wouldn’t have time to bake it that evening. Needless to say…3 days went by and I still hadn’t baked it. No problem. I pulled it out and went to town getting it ready to bake. But, this time, I decided to try baking a WHOLE 4 POUND LOAF! Oh my! It turned out GORGEOUS! It was HUGE too…it took up the whole diagonal length of my large pizza peel! You can check it out here:

    I just have to say – I am NOT a baker at all – of any kind. I hate to bake, in fact. But, thanks to you and this fabulous, easy recipe, I now bake bread like crazy and people are astonished how quick and good it is. And, I am astonished at myself for being able to make it! Thanks so much!

    1. Thanks Kristin! So glad your big loaf worked. My last 4-pounder was a giant boule, and because of the shape, was a little gummy in the center

      1. I did a 4 lb boule as well recently and it, too, was a little gummy in the center, so that’s why I decided to try the longer shape this time and it worked out much better. I think I actually did bake it a little longer than normal, now that I think about it – hard to say how long – I forgot to set the timer! Probably about 45-50 minutes.

  9. 2 pounders work great in a greased 9×5 loaf pan too.
    2-2 1/2 hour rest for master whole wheat from HBIN5.
    Simple slash down the center and bake for 45 min at 450F.
    I bring sandwiches to work everyday on these loaves.
    I can’t stand store bought bread anymore.
    Thanks again Zoë and Jeff!!

    1. Thanks for the comment on the loaves. I have been having a hard time with mine rising, but it looks like I just need to increase the rise time.

  10. I’ve made a two lb. loaf of rye. It came great with one exception – it spread sideways while baking instead of up. I let it rest for a little over an hour. Delicious but I wish it was taller.

  11. Rather than making a 2-pound loaf would it be possible to bake two 1-pound boules at the same time and on the same stone? BTW, I love the book and the bread. The downside is that I now want to eat bread with every meal which isn’t so good for the diet.

    1. Hi Bruce,

      Yes, you can bake two 1-pound loaves at the same time, as long as they will fit comfortably on your stone. No need to change the baking time from the book.

      Thanks, Zoë

  12. URGENT! I am making the Soft Whole Wheat Sandwich Bread. I just put the 2 lb piece of dough in the loaf pan to rest and remembered that I have an appointment and have to leave the house. Do I put it back in the fridge and start over when I get home or is it okay to allow it to rest for a longer period of time (2-3 hours)? Appreciate your help.

    1. Lois: 2 hrs would be fine, but 3 hrs would probably over-proof. I bet four hours in the fridge would be decent though. My guess is just put in fridge, and give it a half-hour outside the fridge when you get home.

    1. Mike: Water pan’s still nice. Time and temp should be the same; possibly a little longer. See how the crust looks.

      1. oh yeah. i checked that out. With glazed pots, there is a possibility of trace amounts of lead. However, with the un-glazzed. its just clay that has been kilned. I will call the and find out. I tried it out last night and it worked WONDERS. It was awesome. The only downfall i am experiencing with any steam method, is the crust is nice and hard when it comes out of the oven BUT 10 min later, after it has been cooling on a rack, it is not crusty anymore. Its soft but a chewy texture like a bagel. Tastes great but does not stay crusty. haha

  13. Hello Jeff & Zoe,
    Just wanted to say that we made the White Clam Pizza for lunch today and the two of you are Genius for putting such an idea in the new book. I surely don’t think I’d ever thought to put those ingredients together and certainly not on a pizza. It was delicious and for some reason, the combination of ingredients caused my clams to have more of a chicken taste, at least on my taste buds. Couldn’t figure out why, just kept taste testing to see if I was tasting chicken, and sure enough I was. Isn’t that weird? Anyhow, just wanted to say thank you for such a creative and delicious pizza.
    Good Day to you both!

  14. I’m having an issue scoring my loafs, especially baguettes. The knife doesn’t slice through the top of the loaf as illustrated in this post. The dough sticks to the knife and it ends up being more of a smear than a cut. I’ve tried using the sharpest knive I can find in my kitchen. Am I doing something wrong?

    Otherwise, my bread is coming out fantastically. By the way, I am working out of your first book, “Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day.”

    1. Chris: Sharp isn’t the issue– it has to be serrated. Serrated steak knives aren’t quite as good as a good serrated bread knife.

  15. I tried this recipe for the first time today, only did it in a loaf pan using your suggestions. I know you suggest waiting for the bread to cool completely, but I could not wait! Schmeared it with butter and am in heaven. I am totally hooked on your bread books. Could I make mini loaves from this recipe and if so, a suggestion on times?

    1. Missy: Which of our books do you have, which recipe are you using (page number)? I can direct you from there…

      1. Hi Jeff,

        Oops, sorry I didn’t reference it! I used the master recipe in your Healthy Bread in 5 Minutes a Day.


  16. I just mixed up the Carrot Coconut bread recipe and it seems pretty wet. Is that correct for this particular bread? Also, I have a nonstick pan that makes 8 mini-loaves. Can I use it for this bread? I would love little mini-loaves to take to work. Thanks.

  17. I tried to leave this question last week but am not sure it went through–and then I couldn’t remember where exactly I had tried to post it, so I apologize if this is a repeat.

    My question/problem is that I never get the amount of dough I’m supposed to get. For instance, I can’t make 4 1-lb loaves from the AB in 5 Master Recipe and was most recently disappointed to find I couldn’t get 3 1.5-lb loaves from the Soft American Style Bread recipe. I use a scale when I measure out the dough, and with the Soft Amer. Bread, I got 2 loaves at 24oz and only 11oz left over.

    I measure very carefully so have no idea why I don’t get the amount of dough the book says I should get.

    Do you think it would have worked all right if I had split that extra 11oz between the 2 original loaves and had 2 30oz loaves? Could I have added dough after the shaping and reshape successfully?

  18. Not sure if I am doing this right but I have a question. I have enough dough left from the Master Recipe, Artisan Bread in 5 min. to make 1 loaf and I was wondering if I could make a new batch in the same container with the remaining dough still in there?

    1. Hi Debbie,

      We usually suggest adding about half of that to a new batch, it is just easier to incorporate it into the fresh dough. Just add the new water to the old dough and break it up a bit, then add the rest of the ingredients.

      Thanks, Zoë

      1. Thank you for your response. I am thrilled you have taken the time to do this. I decided to just freeze what was left and make a loaf at another time. I just made a double batch and the family is so excited to be getting that wonderful bread again! I did add some onion and garlic powder, 2 of our favorite seasonings. Update in the last minute, I doubled the recipe, not thinking about the size of my container! Have halved it and put into another container. No worries, family can’t wait for more bread. Will be making more of the other recipes soon. I have ordered book, using library copy for now. I am on and am keeping everyone updated on this. So good! I used to make from scratch but due to arthritis and fibro, no longer, but now, thanks to you both, homemade bread and pizza dough again. Thanks so much.

      2. Hi Debbie,

        We are thrilled that you are baking again! What a wonderful note, thank you. Your onion and garlic dough sounds great!

        Enjoy, Zoë

  19. Hi Jeff and Zoe!! Thank you for everything you’ve taught me in the art of bread-making. I dream of opening a bakery in the next few years. There is NOTHING so heavenly as fresh bread. That said, can you tell me how to make a monogram on the top of a loaf? I’ve seen photos from European markets of large round loaves with letters on top, and I can’t tell if they’re scored with a knife or created with two different types of dough. They almost appear to be inlaid! If you can help with this I would be most grateful.

    Thanks again for your work, and for sharing your knowledge with the rest of us.

    1. Hi Laura,

      They are typically scored with a knife or Lame, but they can also have dough inlaid into the cut surface. This is a place for experimenting and creating your own “signature” for your loaves.

      Have fun! Zoë

  20. I have been using your recipes for baking fabulous rye bread for over a year in my traditional electric oven. I use a broiler pan for steam, and the cornstarch wash gives a great crust to the rye… light brown and crisp.
    I’ve been trying to make this bread in larger numbers in a commercial CONVECTION oven and have found two problems.

    First – though I used a broiler pan and created decent steam with boiling water for the first batch I tried, the crust did not come out well on the rye. It was soft, not crisp, and looked faded, not as it did in the conventional oven where it came out perfect. I don’t know if the issue is the fan (it was on high versus low) or is it simply the nature of the convection oven. Can I get the same great crust as in the conventional oven?

    Second, I found a lot of misshapen loaves.. not sure if this is partially due to the strong fan and hot air pushing on the rising dough.

    Any suggestions?

    1. Hi Bob,

      The irony is that professional ovens, that are not equipped with steam injectors, do not create as good a crust as home ovens. The problem is not the fan, it is that they are not as well insulated and all the steam escapes, which means the crust is not as crisp and the color is not as nice.

      The misshapen aspect is probably due to the fan. Is it possible to turn off the fans? Many pro ovens have the option for wind or not. This will at least help with the shape. Are you baking on stones? This will help with the crust.

      thanks, Zoë

  21. I just bought your artisan bread book, a pizza stone. I have made one half batch of the master recipe in a large plastic mixing bowl and covered with a piece of plastic wrap and a tea towel. I had dry spots on the top of my dough. It seemed to me that my dough was not as moist as what I’ve seen in the videos. So today I made a full batch in a 4L ice cream pail weighing the flour. I’m using fine sea salt and am hoping that doesn’t cause problems. I did end up adding a little extra water as I was mixing because again, it seemed a bit dry and all the flour was not incorporating. I took out some of the wet dough and put it in a smaller container to compensate for the 4L bucket and have my fingers crossed. Could it be that Canadian unbleached all purpose is different than American?

    1. Hi Nancy,

      Yes, I think you are exactly right about the Canadian flour. It is a harder wheat than what we typically find in the US and has a higher protein content, which makes it stronger and it absorbs more water. Sounds like you already made the proper adjustments.

      Enjoy, Zoë

      1. I think you’re right. It looks exactly like the ones in the video. Next project will be to get a bigger bucket. Thank you both for the fabulous method of breadmaking! Something I’ve always wanted to do, but never could because of arthritis. This I CAN do! 🙂

  22. Hi guys. I’m sorry if this has already been answered. I want to bake two loaves after work tomorrow for a dinner party. I won’t have time for the resting. Is it okay to shape the loaves and “rest” in the fridge overnight?

    1. Hi Mary,

      Yes, this is a great way to make the timing work for you. Shape the loaves in the morning, set them on parchment, drape them loosely with plastic and refrigerate for 8 to 14 hours. Place the loaves on the counter while you preheat the baking stones, slash and bake as usual.

      Enjoy! Zoë

  23. Hard Cover Artisan Bread In Five Minutes A Day, The Discovery That Revolutionized Home 26 The Maste Recipe: Boule (Artisan Free form Loaf)
    If salt kills yeast and your recipe calls for Salt and Yeast in equal amounts is that why my dough never rose? What am I doing wrong? I left it on the counter all night and it never grew a lick. The loaves were extremely heavy and almost hard. I made it with all whole wheat flour.

    1. Hi Linda,

      It sounds like your yeast is no longer any good. Check the expiration date and then you may want to give it a quick proof by adding a bit to a cup of warm water and let it sit for 5 to 10 minutes. This is not usually necessary, but once in a while yeast will fail.

      Here is a video post on how high you can expect the dough to rise:

      The salt and yeast together will not be the issue, unless you left them alone together in the water for a very long time.

      Thanks, Zoë

      1. Zoe, I will try it again. The jar of yeast was fresh and has a year before it is out of date. I had thought that the next time I would proof it with a bit of the water and maybe a tough of sugar to get it smiling. My husband is a “breadasourous” so I really want this to work.


      2. Zoe, what do you think of baking the bread in a Dutch Oven? You know the hot coals under and on top and would you use a stone for that?

  24. Going back to the not rising thing. Is it possible that using all whole wheat flour had anything to do with it. Maybe I should have gone 1/2 and 1/2 with white flour. What do you think?

  25. Linda: We definitely do the Dutch Oven, see two post on that:

    Baking in a Dutch Oven: or outdoors You don’t need the stone for that.

    I’d avoid trying that over live coals, will be inconsistent.

    Then, about the WW substitution– shouldn’t have caused it to fail completely as happened to you. Though when you’re learning the recipes, just stick with the ones in the book. You can’t just swap WW for AP w/o any other substitutions. That certainly would have contributed to a very dense loaf– you need a lot more water– try the wheat recipes in the book before improvising, and let us know how you make out.

    My recc: try the white recipe first (Chapter 5).

    1. Artisan Bread In 5 Minutes a Day, Want to try the camp fire method once any way. However, I have a question on the grill method. I have crockery piece that is safe to 500F. I am thinking that this might work as I haven’t found an enamel over cast iron one the size that I want as yet. I can find the all cast iron but thought I would try this pottery product first. If it doesn’t work Paula Dean can have it back. I am thinking on a baking stone using indirect heat on the grill with the pot on top of the stone and using parchment paper. What do you think? Hope that your holiday was outstanding!!!!

    2. OK, To try this us purchase a Paula Deene oval covered pottery casserole and gave this a try. Weber Genesis 3 burner, indirect heat, steel pizza pan from WalMart and a 12 baking stone from who knows where. It turned out great. Now that I have proven this method, I may go get the enameled cast iron investment. Thanks so much for the tutoring and your patience.
      God Bless,

  26. I have some questions about changing the number of breads I bake in an oven. I have an electric oven that has done a great job baking 4 loaves of your different recipes. I am now trying to bake 7 0r 8 loaves at one time and have a question about gauging when a bread is done.
    I am using a high and low rack. The low rack is close to the element and the baking stone (I place the breads on small metal trays,and place them on the baking stone just above the element). I place 4 breads on each level, and after 20 minutes rotate them so as not to burn the tops on the top rack, or the bottoms on the low rack. I put an aluminum foil tent over each bread on top after 20 minutes or so, and have been covering the ones on the bottom rack too, to prevent burning that might occur.
    The breads are coming out well but less hard on the surface. I have let them cook longer by about 15 minutes in total, sometimes lowering the heat. I have read that bread should reach between 205 and 211 degrees but these breads do not seem to go above 200. I never used a thermometer on the earlier batches. There didn’t seem to be a need.
    My questions are:
    1- should your bread recipes reach a certain temperature to be sure they are done
    2- Is there a logical amount of time I should expect to add for baking twice as many breads? My loaves are 1 1/2 lbs.
    4- If the crusts soften while cooling, does that mean I am definitely undercooking these breads?


    1. Hi Bob,

      Wow, great to hear you are baking so much bread! Which recipe are you using? Are they in a loaf pan or free form? This will help me determine how to best help you.

      Thanks, Zoë

      1. Hi Zoe,

        I am baking the caraway rye, european peasant, pumpernickel and plain master recipe. I bake them all free form on small individual size baking sheets, and can fit four baking sheets on each rack.

        thanks for your great recipes,


  27. Bob: These are “lean” doughs, so no egg and little or no fat. So if you go for an Instant-Read thermometer, it should read 205 to 210 degrees.

    Sounds like you’re overloading the oven a little, maybe there’s too much steam in there from the breads and it’s not dissipating. Might have to just tolerate the softer crust. Not necessarily an under-baking problem. But my guess (and it’s only a guess) is that with all that extra mass in the oven, baking time might increase 15%

  28. Have you ever baked with sprouted grains? I would love to make a sprouted grain bread with your technique.


  29. Am trying the artisan pizza recipe printed in Costco Magazine(April) Have mixed the dough. Do I leave it on the counter in the container for 48 hours and then refrigerate it? Or can I refrigerate it sooner if it has risen significantly?

    1. Maggie: Refrigerate it after rising for about two hours, then into the fridge. Leave it open a crack for the first 48 hours, sorry that isn’t clear.

  30. The response to my comment was that it was awaiting moderation. I am not sure what that means. I filled in the required fields. Do I need to do something else?

  31. Dear Friends, I have baked 4 boules yesterday, on one large baking stone. The corn meal began to burn and filled my kitchen with smoke! What should I do to prevent this from happening again?

    Thank you!

    1. Hi Helena,

      Try using parchment paper under the loaves, it is much easier and will not smoke up your kitchen.

      Thanks, Zoë

  32. I use some King Arthur European Style Flour I would like to use for the master recipe in Artisan Bread in Five Minutes A Day. How many cups of this flour do you recommend using and how much water?

    1. Linda: Not familiar with this flour. If it’s higher in protein than A.P., use more water (1/8 cup? 1/4 cup?) with the same amount of flour. If lower in protein, use less. If can’t tell, you’re going to have to experiment.

      1. I checked on King Arthur’s website. The European Style Artisan flour is 11.7% protein.

  33. Soft American style white bread, pg 204 (on my kindle)

    I need some help 🙂
    It’s taking 1.5 hr to cook, that seems long? And after letting it cool all the way it seem spongy inside.

    I increase rest time
    I double or triple my dough
    I use an oven thermometer to check the temp.
    I do make a larger loaf, we are a family of 7.

    Any advice for making it not so spongy?
    Should I just try a different recipe? My kids are little and prefer the softer crust.

    And I love this book! Thank you!

    1. Hi Molly,

      Are you making this as a free form loaf or baking it in a pan? Do you think your loaf is larger than 2 pounds? how long are you letting it rest before baking? Have you tried baking the loaf as a 1-pound loaf and had it come out correctly?

      Thank you! Zoë

      1. I am using a loaf pan. I can measure it next time to see how heavy the loaf is. The recipe does say to fill the pan a little more then half way.

        I’m letting it rest 140 min and then rest while pre heating.

        Making the smaller loaf, comes out done, but still well over an hr to cook

        Could I do 2 1 pound loafs at a time?
        Do you think the pan type matters?

        Thanks for answering! We love this stuff!

  34. Molly: What do you mean by “spongy?” If you mean “chewy,” well, our stuff is chewier than typical store-bought bread– and in general, denser. You’re already doing a nice long rest for this large loaf– and sure you can do 2 1-pounders (resting time can be decreased in that case).

    Pan type matters somewhat, but unpredictably. I’ve had great results with all kinds…

  35. Thank of soggy spongy.

    Should I increase the heat? The book says 350.

    And I’m tripping the recipe, is that OK?

    Thank you

    1. Molly: Change the heat only if your oven thermometer says you’re low (so be sure to test the temp). Are you trippling the loaf-size, or the batch size? If it’s the loaf-size you’re trippling, that probably explains why you’re having trouble.

      Otherwise maybe just decrease the liquid in the recipe slightly—your dough may be too wet.

  36. Update :
    I doubled the batch only, added 1/3 cup more flour, reduced the salt (but only by accident. I ran out.), made 2 1 pound loafs, let them rest for 2 hours, and then cooked em bit 1.5 hours and they came out perfect!

    Thanks for your help!

  37. FYI
    I took a risk 🙂
    I got out the scale to make sure I had 2 pounds of dough, formed, put it in the loaf pan and let it rest on the counter over night with plastic wrap loosely over it. Baked it first thing in the morning at 350 for 2 hours and it came out nice! Cooked all the way through and it’s huge! The crust is a little chewy, but I’m guessing that has to do with the size.
    Thanks again for your help!

  38. In this book you use tempetures of 350 to 450F., depending on the type or size of bread you are making. Is there some logic to 375 vs. 400 or 425 or 350?

    Longer initial resting time at room temp will boost initial loaves’ sourdough character, but will also probably shorten effective storage life in the fridge (may get dense and over-sour earlier).

    1. In general: lowest temp (350) for sweet, eggy bread (brioche, challah). Hottest temp (450) for lean dough (no eggs or sweetener).

  39. I’m not finding a category for this question so I’ll just ask. Refrigeration or a cold environment: My refrigerator is too full in the house and my small patio ‘spare’ refrigerator is also full right now, and is always too full to have two batches going. So, for winter only, as long as the outdoor temperature is 40 degrees F or less for LEAN doughs only, can I just sit it on top of the ‘frig outdoors, even if it freezes at night? I’m in Rocky Mtn. area so it’s going to be predictably cold night and day for quite a while. (No critters can get to it.)


    1. Hi Donna,

      Sure, the dough does freeze well, but you’ll just have to factor the defrost into your timing.

      Enjoy! Zoë

  40. HELP! Hi there! Y’all are so sweet to help with so many answers. I signed up for the bread guild for communion for my church and have been using your recipe for the past 2 weeks trying to get it down!! I am so new to baking and your info is helpful!!! However, I have to make a 4-5 pound loaf for the preacher to break and serve. My boules keep coming out with a burnt crust and doughy center. I am cooking at 450 for around 35 mins. After 35 mins, the top starts to char! I may need to cool it longer before cutting. Any other suggestions? My first bread debut is on Sunday and I am getting nervous that the preacher won’t be able to break it and then it will stick to his fingers upon passing it out!!! Thank you!!!

    1. The big ones can be challenging with dough this wet. I’m wondering if your oven’s running too hot. Best thing to do is to check the oven temp, with something like If that’s not it– consider a flatter loaf. Or just turn town the oven temp 25 or even 50 degrees, and bake for 45-55 minutes.

  41. Hello,

    Thanks for the wonderful Healthy Bread in 5 book! I am wondering if you have any thoughts on using sprouted flours in your breads? I have been told to avoid wheat and a number of other grains for digestive reasons, (but not because of the gluten). The GF breads are great, but spelt has also been recommended as possibly more easily tolerated than wheat, and sprouting also may further improve digestibility. I’m looking forward to trying the spelt bread recipe, but also wondering if sprouted spelt flour would work the same as regular spelt flour?

    1. Haven’t tried it, but it’s worth the experiment, I think. If you do it, would you report back what you find?

  42. I’m thinking of baking two 2lb loaves at once. I tried skimming these comments but couldn’t find a clear answer. Should I alter the baking time or keep it the same as if I just had one 2lb loaf in the oven?


    1. Hi Sergie,

      You don’t need to make any changes. If the loaves look a bit pale, let them bake a bit longer.

      Thanks, Zoë

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.