Friday, December 14, 2012

No Knead Bread - the new crack

I've been using a slightly modified version of this no knead bread from Frugal Homemaking.

My version is slightly different, in that I have lowered the salt.  It's just a preference thing - I don't like salty bread.

It's amazing, and super easy.  I can make it up quickly, ignore it for half a day or over night, throw it in the oven and take it to a gathering and come away looking like a hero.  Yea me!

Here's the basic recipe I've been making.  I've got it memorized now.  Maybe I'll try making it on the boat!

No Knead Bread

3 cups warm water
1 tsp yeast
1 1/2 Tbsp salt
6 cups white flour

Mix the yeast and salt with the warm water, mix in the flour.  Let rise (covered or uncovered) for 5+ hrs.  (I use an unheated oven, since my house is a bit cool this time of year)

Put an oven-safe pot w/ lid into the oven to warm at 500 degrees F.   I line the pot with parchment paper because that makes it easier to get the bread out.
Once oven reaches temperature pour/scrape the dough/batter into the pot, cover with the lid, and bake for 1/2 hour.  Turn oven off, take lid off pot and leave the bread in the hot (but cooling) oven for another 15-30 min.  (this crisps and browns the top)

That's it.  All done.

Plain no knead bread and chocolate chip dry cherry no knead bread

Notes and Modifications:

Once you've got the basic recipe down you can play with it.  I like dried apricots with walnuts bread, and chocolate chip cherry bread.  Bit Boy likes kalamata olive bread, which is also pretty good.

This is a pretty big loaf of bread, I use a 10 qt cast iron dutch oven with a lid to bake it in.  It makes two nice smaller loaves if you have a couple of smaller pots.  If you make two loaves you can have one plain and experiment with adding stuff to the other loaf.

I've tried this with whole wheat flour.  Don't do that.  Just don't.  I usually love whole grain flours, but this comes out like a brick.  If you  must, you can make 1 cup of it whole wheat, but it won't be crack bread, it'll just be very good bread.

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