No Knead Bread

No Knead Bread… crusty on the outside…incredibly soft and perfect on the inside!  The best part is there are only a few ingredients and it is really EASY to make!
No-Knead Bread / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

A few years ago I found this recipe and article in our newspaper. “Wow!”, I thought to myself… “I sure wish I could bake bread like THAT!” So I tried the recipe and the picture of the bread (above) is my very first effort! This bread is amazing!
The article was originally published in the New York Times in 2006, then re-published in the Oregonian, March 13, 2007.  Here’s a quote from the article about this recipe:
“Once mastered in it’s basic form, this bread recipe, originally published in the New York Times, is ripe for adaptation.  You can try different flours, though for best results, substitute whole-grain flour for no more than half of the white (and use even less rye flour, which tastes great, but is heavy).  Fold fresh herbs or olives into the dough as desired, or enjoy it as it is.”   -Leslie Cole
This is one of the most delicious and easy recipes for bread I’ve ever used. Really. It only takes a couple of minutes to mix up the ingredients;  you let it rest overnight (so plan ahead!), then the magic happens the next day! The best part is there is NO kneading…yay!
No-Knead Bread / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
No-Knead Bread / The Grateful Girl Cooks!Just a shaggy mound of dough after mixing… Now cover it; leave it out on counter for 15-18 hours.

After a good night’s rest, the dough is ready and its surface is dotted with bubbles.

No-Knead Bread / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Ready after 15-18 hours rest…see the bubbles on the surface?

Turn the dough out on a lightly floured work surface; sprinkle dough with a little more flour; put some flour on your hands to keep dough from sticking to you, and fold the dough over on itself once or twice (that’s it!).  Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let dough rest another 15 minutes (Honestly, this dough must be really tired…it rests so much).

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 dust a cotton kitchen towel (not terry cloth – it will stick like crazy!) with flour, wheat bran or cornmeal; put dough, seam side down on towel and dust the dough with more flour, bran or cornmeal.  Cover with another kitchen towel and let rise for 2-3 hours (Can you believe how tired this dough is?).  When it is ready, dough will be more than doubled in size and will not readily spring back when poked with a finger.

No-Knead Bread / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

At least 30 minutes before the dough is ready, preheat your oven to 450 degrees.  Put a heavy, covered pot or dutch oven in the oven as it heats. (*Note: Use cast iron, enamel, Pyrex or ceramic – anywhere from 3.5 qts. to 6-8 qts.)   When dough is ready, carefully remove covered pot from oven (remember, the covered pot will be blazin’ HOT).  Slide your hands under the dish towel, take aim, and turn dough over into pot, seam side up; it may look like a mess, but that’s OK. Some of the dough may even stick to the dish towel…don’t freak out. Just get as much of that dough ball into the pan as you can, as quickly as you can. **(Cleaning the tea towel up if the dough sticks a bit is really the “hardest” thing about the entire recipe…Just soak it to get some of the dough off, then throw it in the washing machine. I know this from personal experience! ☺)

No-Knead Bread / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Shake pan once or twice if dough is unequally distributed; it will straighten out as it bakes. Trust me. I’m a grown-up.  Cover with the lid and bake for 30 minutes, then remove the lid and bake for another 15-30 minutes, or until loaf is nicely browned. (Keep an eye on it…mine usually takes about 15 minutes).  Cool the bread on a wire rack.

No-Knead Bread / the Grateful Girl Cooks!

Enjoy. Seriously…grab a knife and slather some softened butter on a warm piece of this bread. Take a bite…a BIG bite. This bread will more than likely make your eyes roll back in your head!

No-Knead Bread / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Recipe Adapted from Jim Lahey, Sullivan Street Bakery, New York City

No Knead Bread
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Enjoy a slice of this "crusty crisp on the outside and chewy on the inside" loaf of artisan bread, with no kneading involved.
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Bread
Serves: 1 loaf
Ingredients
  • 3 C. bread flour
  • ¼ teaspoon instant yeast (such as Fleischmann's Rapid Rise Yeast) Note: Use INSTANT yeast!
  • 2½ teaspoons salt
  • 1½ Cups, plus 2 Tablespoons tepid (lukewarm) water
  • Cornmeal or wheat bran as needed (optional-I didn't need it)
Directions
  1. In a large bowl combine flour, yeast and salt. Add the water and stir until blended; dough will be "shaggy" and very sticky. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let dough rest at least 12 hours, preferably about 18 hours (I typically rest mine 15-18 hrs.- the longer the better!), at warm room temperature, about 70 degrees.
  2. After a good night's rest, the dough is ready and its surface is dotted with bubbles.
  3. Turn the dough out on a lightly floured work surface; sprinkle dough with a little more flour; put some flour on your hands to keep dough from sticking to you, and fold the dough over on itself once or twice (that's it!). Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let dough rest another 15 minutes.
  4. 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 dust a cotton kitchen towel (not terry cloth - it will stick like crazy!) with flour, wheat bran or cornmeal; put dough, seam side down on towel and dust the dough with more flour, bran or cornmeal. Cover with another kitchen towel and let rise for 2-3 hours. When it is ready, dough will be more than doubled in size and will not readily spring back when poked with a finger.
  5. At least 30 minutes before the dough is ready, preheat your oven to 450 degrees. Put a heavy, covered pot or dutch oven in the oven as it heats. (*Note: Use cast iron, enamel, Pyrex or ceramic - anywhere from 3.5 qts. to 6-8 qts.) When dough is ready, carefully remove covered pot from oven (remember, the covered pot will be blazin' HOT). Slide your hands under the dish towel, take aim, and turn dough over into pot, seam side up; it may look like a mess, but that's OK. Some of the dough may even stick to the dish towel...don't freak out. Just get as much of that dough ball into the pan as you can, as quickly as you can.
  6. Shake pan once or twice if dough is unequally distributed; it will straighten out as it bakes.
  7. Cover with the lid and bake for 30 minutes, then remove the lid and bake for another 15-30 minutes, or until loaf is nicely browned. (Keep an eye on it...mine usually takes about 15 minutes). Cool the bread on a wire rack.
Notes
Prep time does NOT include overnight resting of the dough time. Tip: I find that if I start the recipe in the late morning and let it rest overnight (we all need a good night's "rest", don't we?), I can get up the next morning and continue the process. With additional "resting times" for the dough, it can be ready for dinner.
Cleaning the tea towel up if the dough sticks a bit is really the "hardest" thing about the entire recipe...Just soak it to get some of the dough off, then throw it in the washing machine. I know this from personal experience! ☺

 

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