Ok, I haven't tasted it yet, but it smells and looks so good I had to write about it now. I read about this book through my nieces' blog and thought I had to give it a try. I got a copy from the library before deciding if I'd buy it or not. If it tastes as good as it's smelling, I will certainly make a purchase.
Jim Lahey wanted to create a rustic, chewy, holey bread like what he experienced in Tuscany. He researched and figured out if you do a very long rise, you don't have to knead because the fermentation time creates the structure and gluten just as well as kneading does. There's very little yeast because he didn't want a yeasty taste to the bread. It's very simple and hopefully it will taste great because I'd love to have this be my weeknight go-to loaf of bread.
I happened to not make the basic bread but went on to the next version which used 1 part wheat flour and 2 parts white flour. Assuming it does taste good, I have to change when I start the process. I began reading the book last night and ran up and got the dough together so I could bake it tonight. It takes 12-18 hours of rising, then another 1-2 hours for the second rise, then about 45 minutes to bake, and another hour to cool. So that's about 21 hours total. If I want to serve it at dinnertime, say around 6 PM, it has to go in the oven no later than 4 PM. That won't work on days I have to go to work, but I could bake it in the morning, before work. To do that, I'd need to only do a 12 hour rise, which is what's on Jim Lahey's Sullivan Street Bakery site, so that should be enough. Then I would start it at 5 PM, have the 2nd rise at 5:30 AM and bake at 7 AM. That would still get us to the bus stop on time and let the bread cool for the day.