Put the flour, yeast and salt in a large mixing bowl. Make a well in the middle and pour the water into it.
Slowly pull the flour into the water, mixing until a workable dough. Put onto a floured surface and knead for 10 minutes, until smooth and elastic.
Put the dough into a lightly oiled bowl, cover and put somewhere warm until it has doubled in size, about 1 hour.
Put the dough back onto a floured surface and push the air out (this is called knocking back). Shape into an oval and put into a 2 pound (900g) loaf tin. Cover again and put back into the warm place for 45 minutes.
Preheat your oven to 220°C/425°F/Gas 7.
Once fully proofed, dust the top with flour and slash the top with a sharp knife.
Bake in the oven for 35-40 minutes. Take out of the oven and remove from the tin. Tap the bottom of the loaf and iff it sounds hollow, it is ready. Leave to cool on a wire rack.
Don't be afraid to get your hands in there and mix the dough. Using your hands is the only way to really know the consistency of the dough, as the amount of water needed can vary.
The dough really needs somewhere warm to rise, as the yeast reacts to warmth, as it's a fairly quick rising dough. You can put it it on a sunny windowsill or in a warm cupboard.
The cooking time will depend on the temperature of your oven. Some run hot, some run cold - you know your oven best. Use an oven thermometer to make sure it is exact.
Leave it to cool before serving. I know it is tempting to cut straight in to the bread, but it will be easier to cut once cooled.
To make this loaf like really pretty, brush it lightly with an egg wash and then sprinkle over some poppy seeds.