1. Use unpainted, unglazed clay pots. The terra cotta ones work well and they are cheap. Obviously the size of the pot will determine the size of the loaf. Most bread recipes will make about 4 - 5 loaves in the 5 inch clay pots.
2. Scrub the pot thoroughly in hot soapy water. Rinse well and allow to dry overnight.
3. Using vegetable oil, rub the interior and the lip of the pots. Keep oiling until the pots will absorb no more. Be patient, They are very absorbent.
4. Place the pots on a cookie sheet covered with a piece of aluminum foil. Place in a COLD oven. Heat the oven to 400 degrees then turn off the heat and allow to cool. Oil and heat once more to season the pots. Now they are ready for use.
5. Always grease the pots before baking in them, especially on the lip.
6. When preparing the dough, let the dough rise once as you normally would. Then shape in a ball and allow to rise in the pot to shape the dough. The ball should half fill the pot. Don't worry about the hole in the bottom. The dough should rise to the top of the pots. Baking time will depend on the size of the pots used and the type of bread. A general rule of thumb is that the bread is done when thumping it on the top produces a hollow sound. Use the same temperature that your recipe calls for.
7. Let the bread cool in the pots for about 5 minutes then remove from the pots to a cooling rack.
8. Just so nothing went to waste we used the bases for our mushroom quiches!