This is a recipe I adapted from my best friend’s mother’s best friend’s recipe. (I promise that sentence is written properly!) It’s easy as can be, not requiring a mixer, a ton of shaping or kneading or even a double rise. It tastes delicious fresh, but even better toasted the next day, in my opinion. It’s delicious with butter, peanut butter, or fresh jam like this Strawberry Mint Freezer Jam. When bread recipes call for a warm place to rise, I usually just turn on the oven to preheat a bit early and let the dough bowl sit on top of the stove. The heat that starts to rise is the perfect temperature to feed the yeast.

Makes one 8.5 or 9-inch loaf


  • 2 ½ – 3 cups (325 – 390 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 2 ¼ teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1 ½ teaspoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup (240 grams) milk
  • ¼ cup (59 grams) water
  • Cornmeal, for coating


Make the Bread:

  1. Coat an 8.5 or 9-inch loaf pan with non-stick spray and dust with cornmeal to coat. Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, add 2 cups of flour, the yeast, sugar, salt and baking soda and whisk to combine.

  1. Heat the milk and water in the microwave or in a small saucepan over low heat for a few minutes until it is lukewarm, about 110 – 120˚F. Add to flour mixture and mix to combine, until a shaggy dough begins to form.
  1. Add just enough flour to the mixture, a few tablespoons at a time until the dough comes together in a loose ball. The dough should still be slightly sticky but dry enough to pick up. Once it is, place in the prepared loaf pan and sprinkle with more cornmeal. Cover and let rise for 45 minutes in a warm place.
  1. Preheat the oven to 450˚F. Bake for 25 minutes or until light golden brown on the edges. Remove and let cool on a wire rack before removing and slicing. The loaf can be wrapped and kept at room temperature for up to 3 days.


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AnnMarie Mattila
AnnMarie Mattilahttps://pastryathome.com
AnnMarie Mattila is a writer for Pastry Arts Magazine, as well as a freelance baker and pastry chef in New York. She has a master’s degree in Food Studies from New York University and is also a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education.

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