This is a really easy and quick bread with virtually no kneading. It is a dense bread, not fluffy like a regular loaf of white bread -- kind of a rustic-looking bread.
3 cups bread or all-purpose flour (or you can do 1 1/2 cups white and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)
1 package yeast (or 2 teaspoons)
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup warm water (or 1 1/2 cups if you omit the olive oil)
1/4 cup olive oil
Coarse salt to taste (optional)
Mix flour, yeast, and salt in a bowl.
Add the water all at once, stirring with a wooden spoon.
Add the olive oil. Mix 1-2 minutes, until a ball forms.
Shape by hand into a flat round or long loaf (I knead it just a couple of times here).
Place on baking sheet. Let rise in the warmest part of your kitchen, covered, while you preheat the oven to 425.
Brush with water, sprinkle with salt if you like, and bake for 15 minutes.
Then lower the heat to 350 and bake about 30-45 minutes.
You can add 1 tablespoon fresh herbs too (I've done rosemary).
Source: Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything (1998 edition -- I can't find this recipe in his updated edition).
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