Place the oil and your onions into in a frying pan and gently cook until they are really soft. After ten minutes of cooking, once the onions have begun to soften, add the sliced garlic. Add the caraway seeds 5 minutes before the end of cooking. Set to one side to cool.
Put the flour, salt and yeast in a large mixing bowl. Make a well in the centre and add the water. Cold water is fine – this prove doesn’t need to be jump-started with warm water – as I want this to be a slower prove, which makes for better, more flavoursome bread. Mix the dough well until all the flour is incorporated.
Leave for 10 minutes and then turn onto a lightly oiled work surface and knead the dough for 5-10 minutes until the dough is smooth and elastic.
Place the dough in an oiled bowl and cover with a clean, damp tea towel and leave to rest for an hour or more, until it has approximately doubled in size.
Preheat the oven to 220C. Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured surface and very gently stretch the dough slightly so you roughly have a 25x25cm square, about 2.5cm thickness, a dough scraper will help to do this.
Spread the cooled onion mixture over the surface and gently pull the corners of the dough over the onions to enclose the onions with the dough then turn the dough over so that the seam is underneath, shape into a boule.
Dust the base of the cloche with semolina and place the loaf onto the base. Brush the surface of the loaf with milk and sprinkle with caraway seeds. Using a lame, gently and clearly make a cut across the top of loaf about 1cm deep.
Cover with the lid of the cloche and cook for 10 minutes, turn the oven down to 180C and cook for a further 30-35 minutes until firm and sounds hollow when the base is tapped.
Remove from the oven and the cloche and cool the loaf on a wire rack.
Makes: One large (1kg) loaf
60g olive oil, plus extra for greasing
3 red onions, peeled and sliced
3 cloves smoked garlic, sliced (optional)
2 tbsp caraway seeds x, plus extra to decorate
500g Mulino Murino Macina flour, plus extra for dusting
10g sea salt
15g fresh yeast
350g cold water
Semolina for dusting
A little milk to glaze
Large heavy based saucepan
Large mixing bowl
Grignette / lame