1.5 Tsp salt
2 Tsp powdered sugar
1 1.4 Tsp instant yeast
1) Mix all of the dough ingredients EXCEPT the salt in a medium/large bowl— by hand or mixer — until it begins to form strands and come together. THEN add the salt. Continue to mix (about 2min) until a slightly sticky dough is formed. Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface and knead 3-5 minutes until smooth and silky.
2) Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let rest in warm place for about 1 hour, until doubled.
3) Gently deflate the dough, and transfer it to a lightly floured surface. Divide the dough into 8 pieces to form flowers (in this case, form 8 balls with the dough), or 4 pieces to form knobbed loaves (in this case, roll the dough evenly with your hands to form a log, about 14-16" long.
4) Place the balls (or long loaves) on a lightly greased baking sheet, cover, and let rest for 15 minutes (they will puff a little). Preheat the oven to 370°F.
5) Using scissors (or a sharp knife), cut the balls in 5 places (do not cut completely to the center of the ball--see picture above) and spread the petals slightly apart. If you are making the Epi (knobby) loaves, shaping is easy and is well demonstrated in the video below:
6) Bake the rolls/loaves for 20 to 25 minutes, or until they're a dark, golden brown and sound hollow when tapped on the underside. Remove them from the oven, and transfer to a rack to cool.
NOTE: Due to lack of preservatives in the dough, the breads taste the best within the first few hours of baking. I would recommend freezing them if you plan to eat them more than one day after baking, as they will rapidly become stale.