When your weekly menu needs a little comfort food with a touch of sunshine and cheer, try your hand at a loaf of Meyer Lemon Rosemary Bread!
A few weeks ago, the February cover of Bon Appétit inspired my to try baking homemade bread in a way I had never tried before. The picture perfect loaf of bread on the cover looked like it was fresh off the bakery shelves, and the perfect roundness of the boule and crisp golden crust led me to doubt that it was actually made in a home kitchen and baked in a conventional oven. I thought “a loaf of bread that looks like that could never come out of my kitchen.” But the bread article was so convincing that if I tried this method of baking bread that required a long fermentation time on my counter but no kneading or fussing over it, I would forever be sold on it above all other bread-baking methods. The article was right!
My friends, if you desire a way to make a golden, round bakery-style boule in your own kitchen, look no further. This recipe is it! Other than the no-kneading, long fermentation time (meaning the bread dough rises for 12-18 hours the first rise), what really makes this recipe unique is that the bread is baked in a cast iron Dutch oven. As many of you may know, cast iron does an excellent job of conducting heat, so the sides of my pot get screaming hot all the way up, resulting in a round bread loaf that’s golden-crisp all over but soft and tender on the inside.
Once I decided to try this new bread-making technique, I went on the hunt for a recipe that would make a Meyer Lemon Rosemary-flavored bread. I wanted to try and replicate the Meyer Lemon Rosemary bread at the baker of my dreams in Dallas, TX – Village Baking Co. I think about this bread all the time ever since I moved away from TX, wishing I could get my hands on the perfect loaf to serve with soups or make my sandwiches on. Eating a loaf of bread from VBC is, in my mind, what a true Parisian bread eating experience should be like (although I have yet to eat bread in Paris; I can only imagine!). The recipe I found from Williams Sonoma is a close-to-perfect match. The cheery notes of lemon and robust smell of rosemary flecked throughout the dough produce a gloriously clean and intoxicating smell that will permeate your kitchen as the dough rises and bakes. And once you’ve finished your bread masterpiece, you will be overwhelmed with a sense of pride and accomplishment that that loaf of bread came from your kitchen!