Friday, February 17, 2012

No-Knead Bread

I don't really know why, but we generally don't make our own bread.  Not having a bread maker isn't really an excuse, it is just that we don't usually think about making bread.  But, now things may change.  A few weeks ago, one of my favorite bloggers, Jacquelyn from Lark & Linen, posted an old Mark Bittman video on making bread that is so easy a 4-year old could make it.  Well, I'm usually up for a challenge, so thought that I should prove that yes, a 25-year old can also make bread.  Plus, the bread also looked so good that I had to try the recipe myself.  And, I can now report that this bread is seriously so easy to make.  I mixed it together in 2 minutes, then just left it overnight, and then folded it over a few times.  It was under 10 minutes of actual work.  The rest was just waiting long enough for the magic to happen.  The bread was perfectly chewy, with a nice thick, crunchy, rustic crust.  I can imagine that it would make the best grilled cheese sandwiches and toast.  All you need to do is mix the dough up 12 to 18 hours ahead of baking the bread! So easy, so delicious, so worth it!

No-Knead Bread
From the New York Times

3 cups all-purpose or bread flour, more for dusting
¼ teaspoon instant yeast
1¼ teaspoons salt
Cornmeal or wheat bran as needed

In a large bowl combine flour, yeast and salt. Add 1-5/8 cups water, and stir until blended; dough will be shaggy and sticky. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let dough rest at least 12 hours, preferably about 18, at warm room temperature, about 70 degrees.

Dough is ready when its surface is dotted with bubbles. Lightly flour a work surface and place dough on it; sprinkle it with a little more flour and fold it over on itself once or twice. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rest about 15 minutes.

Using just enough flour to keep dough from sticking to work surface or to your fingers, gently and quickly shape dough into a ball. Generously coat a cotton towel (not terry cloth) with flour, wheat bran or cornmeal; put dough seam side down on towel and dust with more flour, bran or cornmeal. Cover with another cotton towel and let rise for about 2 hours. When it is ready, dough will be more than double in size and will not readily spring back when poked with a finger.

At least a half-hour before dough is ready, heat oven to 450 degrees. Put a 6- to 8-quart heavy covered pot (cast iron, enamel, Pyrex or ceramic) in oven as it heats. When dough is ready, carefully remove pot from oven. Slide your hand under towel and turn dough over into pot, seam side up; it may look like a mess, but that is O.K. Shake pan once or twice if dough is unevenly distributed; it will straighten out as it bakes. Cover with lid and bake 30 minutes, then remove lid and bake another 15 to 30 minutes, until loaf is beautifully browned. Cool on a rack.


  1. Oh my, bread is my weakness and this looks so incredible. I will be making this for sure. Lovely job, Kelsey and N!

  2. I can't wait to try this!


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