- 3 cups very hot water
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 1/2 tsp. salt
- 2 packages yeast
- 9 1/2 cups War Eagle unbleached bread flour
- Vegetable oil for oiling pan
Use 10-inch heavy cast iron kitchen or Dutch oven. Oil very well the inside of pot and inside of lid with vegetable oil. Cut circle of parchment paper or foil to fit inside bottom of pot. Oil paper as well.
In a bowl, combine hot water, butter, sugar and salt. Stir until butter melts: let cool to luke warm (110-115 degrees). Stir in yeast, cover and set in a warm place until bubbly, about 15 minutes.
Add 5 cups flour and beat with a heavy-duty mixer or wooden spoon to form a thick batter. With a spoon, stir in enough of the remaining flour (about 3 1/2 cups) to form stiff dough. Turn the dough out onto a floured board and knead until smooth, about 10 minutes, adding flour as needed to prevent sticking. Form into a ball and place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 1/2 hours. Punch down the dough and knead on a floured board to form a smooth ball. Place in greased oven and place greased lid on oven. Let rise in warm place until the dough pushes up the lid by about 1/2 inch (about 1 hour).
Preheat oven to 375. Bake, covered with the lid, for 12 minutes. Remove lid and bake another 30 to 35 minutes until loaf is golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped. Remove from the oven and turn loaf out onto rack to cool. You will need a helper. Let cool before slicing.