Kudos to those working towards the betterment of humankind. Breadmaking is far more useful than many other occupations and these two guys are my new heros.
For more years than I care to count, I tried my hand at replicating good, honest bread. Tried all the recommended trucs - saving a knob of dough for the next batch, nuturing a sourdough starter that's older than my son, spritzing the loaf, pan of water in the oven, the long slow cool rise, esoteric flours -- you name it, I've tried it. Made some decent bread along the way, but the Lahey-Bittman loaf beats 'em all.
........ and could anything be simpler? Three ingredients + water and some free time = great bread. Must admit that I violated the first rule of recipe-followers everywhere. I deviated from the published word first time through. On a whim, I proofed my instant yeast prior to adding it to the flour. Glad I did. It was dead. Substituted regular active dry yeast and still made a fabulous product. Mea Culpa. I'll buy new instant yeast and try it tomorrow. Meantime, what a coup for all of us who love great bread. Thank you St. Jim and St. Mark, we honor your contribution to our happiness.
P.S. I know the Le Creuset Doufeu took a drubbing a while back, but I think this bread will be another great use for this pot. There is no plastic knob on top, nothing to unscrew or wrap in foil. Just those two lovely metal handles to heat along with the rest of the doufeu.