Even though I just got a new bread book, I couldn't stop myself from making another batch of rustic baguettes. I can't get over how amazing these things are, and how much you can modify them. I've cooked them plain, with bacon, and completely messed up with too much water and some sage. Each one of these has been delicious; it takes me 45 minutes one night. Then, anytime for the next four days, I can be about an hour and a half from stuffing myself with airy, crispy morsels of perfect bread. This bread is pure in both ingredients (containing only flour, water, salt, and yeast) and deliciousness.
To make that last paragraph have more to do with the before and after photos above, the before is after 1 minute of mixing, 5 minute rest, 1 minute of mixing. The photo on the right was taken after the 4 rounds of stretch-and-fold that followed. To wit: wetting your hand; feeling the wonder of dough between your hands as you pull it four times; a rinsing of the hands (almost ritualistic; an ablution); a ten minute rest for the bread.