Add all ingredients to a medium sized mixing bowl and stir to combine. Cover and leave to rise at room temperature for 8-24 hours.
Using well floured hands, turn the dough out onto a floured piece of baking paper and shape into a round loaf. Leave to rest for 30 minutes (while the oven is preheating)
While the bread is resting, place a cast iron dutch oven or other heavy oven dish with a lid (see recipe note 3) in the oven and heat the oven to 220°C/430°F.
Once the bread has rested, use a sharp knife to slash an X in the middle of the loaf. I find that using a serrated knife gets a cleaner cut.
Using oven mitts, remove the dutch oven or oven dish from the oven and carefully place the baking paper with the bread in the dish. Place the lid on (or cover with tinfoil) and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the lid and bake for a further 15 minutes.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool before slicing and eating!
I use active dry yeast but instant yeast or Surebake yeast will also work. If using Surebake yeast, you will just need to use 1 teaspoon instead of only ½ teaspoon. Instant yeast can be directly substituted.
You can use room temperature water but I have found that if it is colder where you are (e.g. in the middle of winter) using warm tap water gives the bread a nice little boost.
A heavy cast iron dutch oven with a lid is what I use to bake the bread, but if you don't have one, my sister uses a roasting dish with tinfoil as a lid and this works perfectly well too. Use what you have!