Still in the wrapper
Hi, I'm new here and have yet to actually bake bread although I've done a fair amount of dessert baking. I use a non-convection LG gas oven and much of the rest of of out paraphernalia is listed in my profile. I expect to get a better thermometer soon as we just have a cheap dial "instant read" right now which is really inadequate for coffee and tea as well as bread. If I get serious about bread baking it sounds like a stone or stones might be the next purchase after a better thermometer. How large a stone is too large? The IDs of our oven are approximately 18.5" deep, 24.5" wide and 18" tall.
My tastes in bread tend to run to what I perceive to be the extremes of the continuum; baguettes and brioche at one end and very chewy/dense whole grain loaves at the other. I'd be shocked if I were to start baking more than a couple loaves every week or two but much remains to be discovered.
Any advice is welcome but suggestions for a good basic recipe to use to develop experience and technique would be great. I'd also be grateful for advice on thermometers and stones.
One other bit of possibly germane information, our house tends to be cool and very dry in the winter (drafty old farmhouse in a moderately cold winter climate) and humid but still not extremely warm in the summer (even in July and August overnight lows in coastal Maine tend to be in the upper 50s or low 60s/15C and highs here are rarely above 85F/29C)