Note: Our apologies for the error in the original recipe; as of 12/24/13, the amount of water in the dough portion has been decreased from 1 1/2 cups to 1/2 cup.
1) To make the starter: Mix the water, yeast, and flour, stirring until the flour is incorporated. Cover and let rest at room temperature for about 14 hours, until bubbly.
2) To make the dough: Combine the starter with the remaining ingredients, and mix and knead by hand, mixer, or bread machine to make a soft, smooth dough.
3) Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover, and let rise until doubled, about 60 minutes.
4) Gently deflate the dough, divide it in half, and round each half into a ball.
5) Place each ball, seam side up, in a generously floured mini brotform. No brotform? Place the dough seam side down on a piece of parchment.
6) Cover and let rise until noticeably puffy, about 60 minutes.
7) Tip the loaves out of the brotform onto a cornmeal-dusted baker's peel or parchment, and transfer them to a pizza stone in a preheated 425°F oven.
8) Bake the loaves on the stone for 22 to 26 minutes, until they're golden brown. No pizza stone? Simply bake the loaves on a baking sheet.
9) To make bread bowls: Cut the top third off each loaf. Scoop out the insides, and fill with your favorite hearty soup or stew.
Yield: 2 bread bowls.