Rustic Italian Bread

Happy new year!
I hope everyone had a safe and fun new years eve and day! I didn’t have any big plans but I ended up going to my brothers apartment with my other brother and some friends. Nothing to fancy, just hanging out and breaking out the ole acoustic guitar and singing songs at the top of our lungs. Yeah, it was fun.
On new years millions of people make resolutions they want to accomplish during the new year, but according to studies hardly anyone ever finishes what they want by the time the new year rolls around. That got me thinking though of the resolutions I had made last year, and surprisingly, I actually accomplished most of them!

While they weren’t anything too big, the fact that I stuck by them makes me feel proud!
Some of the things I wanted to do were, get a job(check), enter the warrior dash 5K(check), become more independent(check), and not worry about my weight and what foods I ate so much(double check)!
Like I said, they aren’t too big but I did them and I am so much happier that I have!
I don’t really have any resolutions this year, but I suppose I want to be a better person. I want my legacy when I die to be a great person who helped others whenever she could, completely selfless. I don’t let people walk over me though. One thing I have learned is how to stick up for myself and not take any shit from anyone. I will be nice until you treat me bad. I will forgive and forget, I don’t judge or hold grudges, but if you continue to treat me bad I won’t just take it.
Anyone else making any new years resolutions this year i’d love to hear them! And maybe get ideas for myself.
Anyway enough ranting!
When I think about the new year I think of new beginnings! A fresh start. Which got me to thinking of bread. Bread is the essential symbol of life. “Jesus broke the bread and gave it to his disciples…”
 Even if you’re not religious, in every country and culture they have some sort of bread. Bread is everywhere, it can be seen as a peasant food, but yet can sit at the fanciest dinner table. Everyone loves bread.
So to start the new year off I give you a recipe for a delicious and easy to make rustic Italian bread! I’m not a very experienced bread maker, but this stuff was easy to make and delicious! Give it a try!

Rustic Italian Bread

(Recipe adapted from The Knead For Bread)
Ingredients
3 cups bread flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon (2 packages) yeast
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 1/4 cups water (lukewarm)
2 tablespoons olive oil
Directions
In a bowl add 1 1/4 cups lukewarm water, yeast, and a tablespoon of sugar. Mix well and set aside to activate. In a mixer or bowl add the flour, olive oil, and seasonings. When the yeast is activated, add it to the mixture. Mix dough till smooth. Dough should not stick to a dry finger when touched. Place dough on a lightly floured surface and knead for 10 -12 minutes. Place dough in a bowl greased with olive oil. Cover with a damp cloth in a warm place. Wait for dough to double in size. Punch down. Sprinkle some cornmeal on a flat surface and pour the dough on to it. Form dough into a rectangle. Beat 1 egg with 1/4 cup of water to make an egg wash. Brush the loaf with the egg wash and then lightly sprinkle the loaf with cornmeal. Sprinkle cornmeal on an ungreased baking sheet or lined with parchment baking paper and place the loaf on the pan. Let bread rise (about 1 to 1 1/2 hours) until near doubled and then place in a 375 degree oven and bake until bread is golden brown (30 to 45 minutes) and has a hollow sound when thumped. Remove from the oven and let cool.

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