The pre-heated dutch oven provides the perfect environment for this crusty sourdough bread with a beautiful crumb
Mix the starter and water then add to the flour and roughly hand mix until all flour is absorbed. Let it rest for 1/2-1 hour.
Add salt and hand mix into dough. Let rest 1/2 hour.
Stretch and fold dough, turning bowl 1/4 turn each time (4 turns). Let rest 1/2 hour.
Repeat stretching and folding dough 4 times every 1/2 hour. Turn dough out onto lightly floured surface and form a ball. Let rest 1/2 hour.
Form dough into a smooth ball by cupping your hands and turning the dough.
Place in a heavily floured banneton, seam side up. Alternatively, place dough in a colander lined with a tea towel seam side up. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest on counter 1 hour. Place in refrigerator overnight (12-24 hours).
Remove dough from refrigerator and let sit at room temperature for one hour while the oven and dutch oven preheat (leave the plastic wrap on).
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Place dutch oven (5 quart) in oven for one hour to preheat.
Flip dough out onto parchment paper lined baking sheet. Use a sharp knife or razor to score the top of the bread.
Carefully, lift dough and place in hot dutch oven. Cover with lid and bake 30 minutes. Then, remove the lid and bake another 20-25 minutes until the top is nicely browned. For a deeper brown crust, turn off the oven, crack the oven door open and let the bread sit in the oven another 20 minutes.
Remove bread from pot and let cool before slicing.
Adapted from Emilie Raffa's Artisan Sourdough Made Simple