In a small saucepan, boil 1 c. water
Add to the boiling water ½ c. old fashioned rolled oats; boil for 1 minute
Stir oats; reduce heat to medium; cook oats uncovered for 5-7 minutes
Let cool to lukewarm

In a large mixing bowl, soften 1 pkg. dry yeast (2 ¼ tsp.) in 1 c. warm water
Add 1 ¼ c. warm water
Add 2 Tbsp. buttermilk powder
Add 2 tsp. Kosher salt
Add the cooled cooked oats
Add 3 c. unbleached bread flour
Stir mixture; cover bowl and let sit for ½ hour

Add 3 ½ c. unbleached all-purpose white flour; stir until it becomes a shaggy-looking dough; turn the dough out onto a floured countertop, adding up to ¼ c. extra flour while kneading if necessary. Knead for 8-10 minutes or until the ball of dough is evenly smooth. The dough will be slightly sticky- do not add excessive flour or the bread will be dry.

Scrape clean the mixing bowl; coat it generously with olive oil. Form dough into a ball and place it in the mixing bowl, turning the dough once to coat evenly with oil. Cover the bowl and let rise until doubled.

Using a small kitchen scale, weigh the dough and measure it out into equal size balls. The recipe makes approx. three 1lb loaves, depending on the amount of flour added. Shape the dough into long baguettes and place on 3 generously olive-oiled or parchment paper-lined 3 inch wide Featherstone Pottery Bread Bakers. (note: the bread also bakes well in traditional bread pans).

Immediately take a very sharp knife (serrated knife works well) and make 3 diagonal slash marks just through the surface of each loaf of bread. Cover the bakers with a light-weight cotton kitchen towel and let dough rise until doubled.

When dough has risen, pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Place bread bakers into the oven and bake for 25 minutes.

If using an olive-oiled pan bread baker, remove the pan from the oven; set it on a cooling rack for about 5 minutes, allowing the bread to “sweat”, making it easier to remove the loaf. If using a parchment paper-lined pan, remove the bread immediately.

Let cool. Enjoy!

Clare Larkin, December 21, 2010

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