This crusty loaf requires no kneading. With your yeast water ready, the breadmaking process takes less than two days.

View the process on youtube:

Ingredients for 1 loaf (approximately 1 kilo/2.2 pounds)


120 g (1 cup) whole spelt flour 120 g (1/2 cup) strained yeast

water, at room temperature

Plan ahead:

You’ll need 12 hours for the pre-ferment, then 45 minutes of hands-on time, 5 hours proofing, and 45 minutes to bake. The yeast water takes 8 days to prepare.

Mix the spelt flour and yeast water completely in a large bowl. Let stand covered at room temperature for 12 hours.


To the pre-ferment (above), add the whole wheat flour, yeast water, tap water, and lemon juice until well incorporated. Cover and let stand for 1 hour. Mix in the salt, then the oil. Transfer the dough to a large oiled square container. Perform a set of stretch-and-folds (see video). Cover and let rest 1 hour. Perform two more stretch-and-folds, covering and resting the dough 1 hour between them. Rest the dough 1 final hour. Generously sprinkle a round proofing basket with cornmeal. Sprinkle cornmeal over the dough. Invert the dough onto a floured surface and pat it into a square. Shape the dough into a tight round using the zipper


420 g (3 1/2 cups) whole wheat flour 240 g pre-ferment (all of above)

178 g (3/4 cup) strained yeast water 120 g (1/2 cup) filtered tap water

12 g (1 1/2 tbsp) salt

6 g (1 1/4 tsp) lemon juice

25 g (scant 2 tbsp) olive oil, plus more for oiling container

Cornmeal, for shaping


method (see video). Transfer to the prepared basket, seam-side up. Cov- er and let rest until it the dough fills in slowly when you poke it with a finger, 1 to 3 hours. Position an oven rack and baking stone in the up- per third of the oven, and a rack with a cast iron pan at the lowest level. Preheat the oven to 475F/240C during the last 45 minutes of proofing. Dust the bread’s surface with cornmeal and invert it onto a peel; slash decoratively. (Alternatively, bake on parchment paper in a Dutch oven.) Pour 1 cup of hot water into the cast iron pan and shut the door, then use the peel to transfer the bread to the baking stone. Bake for 30 minutes, then carefully remove the cast iron pan and bake until the bread is dark brown and makes a hollow sound when tapped on the bottom, 10 to 20 minutes longer (207F/97C in the center).


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