When I said I was going to make "no Knead" bread my snarky little brother responded with, "If you don't need it then why are you making it?" Ha. Nice one. Anyone who knows me knows that I have a love hate relationship with making bread. Some days it turns out great, some days it totally flops. The bread class I took at school was pretty lame and uninformative. I honestly didn't learn all that much and came out not knowing much more then when I started. I was saddened by this because bread and cookies have always been my favorites and these are things I really wanted to perfect while in school. Overall I have the whole cookie thing pretty down pact...Alleluia! However, I continue to have my up and down bread days.
In a previous post I mentioned my success with bread recipes from "Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a day", by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francis. I love this book! All of the bread recipes I have made from it have turned out wonderful!!! I do feel as if I am cheating the system somehow by skipping the age old method of kneading, but once I taste the end product I don't feel so guilty anymore. I do love the rustic beauty found in kneading, but until I learn how to do it properly I am going to stick to my no-knead recipes instead.
This was the first loaf bread I made from the book, and I loved it! I can't wait to make a yummy breakfast sandwich out of it. Here is my slightly reworded version of the recipe, but I recommend buying your own copy of the book! You can use your mixer with the paddle attachment if you don't want to use your hands or a spoon, just don't over mix. Happy Baking!
Soft American-Style NO-knead White Bread
from "Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a day"
makes 3 loaves of bread...or you can cut the recipe in 1/2 if you don't want 3 loaves...you can bake some today and then keep the remaining dough in the fridge for up to 7 days, and make rolls for dinner instead. : )
Mix the following in a large bowl:
3 cups lukewarm water
1 1/2 TBS granulated yeast (2 packets)
1 1/2 TBS Kosher salt
2 TBS sugar
1 stick melted unsalted butter
Mix 7 cups unbleached all purpose flour into the above and stir with hands or a spoon until combined. If the dough isn't coming together wet your hands a little and incorporate any loose flour. Cover loosely with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel and allow to rest at room temperature 2 hours.
At this point you can either refrigerate the dough in a sealed container for up to 7 days. Or you can break the dough up into 3 - 1 1/2 pound sections. Shape each part into a ball, using flour if the dough is too sticky...meaning it is sticking to your hands and the surface. Then shape each piece into a oval and drop into greased loaf pan. Let rest 40 minutes (if the dough is fresh) or 1 hour and 40 minutes (if the dough if from the fridge).
Brush top of dough with more melted butter and slash down the middle if you want a crease in your loaf. Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 30-45 minutes until golden brown. Cool completely before slicing into sandwich slices.