Thursday, October 11, 2012

Crusty Bread - No Need to Knead!

 
I constantly encourage my children to venture out and try new things that they might be fearful of failing at.  I have been pushing myself to do the same when it comes to baking.  I decided to do a little research into bread recipes and when I came across this one from Simply So Good, it inspired me to dive in and try it!


First of all, something I truly adore about this particular bread recipe is that it only has four ingredients (and one of them is water)!  Secondly, there is no kneading.  I repeat, NO KNEADING!  (No dough hooks, paddle attachments or mixers either!)  Additionally, I love that the recipe for this bread on Simply So Good's blog offers several options for add-in ingredients to make different flavor combinations of this bread recipe.  Think Orange, Cranberry and Nut Bread ... or, Lemon, Rosemary and Gruyere Bread.  Or, you can just add in different types of shredded cheeses to make Cheese Bread


I figured I would try the plain, original version first to test the waters.  No sense getting too ambitious the first time! Baby steps, Angela, baby steps!

I was so impressed with both the bread and myself!
 
This recipe is soooo easy and sooo delicious that I know I will be experimenting with add-ins very soon! I highly urge you to make a batch of this.  I know you'll be as hooked on it as I am!  My kids said it tasted like bread from Panera Bread!  It was perfect for dipping in the potato soup we had tonight for dinner!
 
Let me just tell you the basics of this recipe.  You mix four ingredients together in a bowl.  Cover it and let it sit for 12 - 18 hours.  Form it into a ball.  Heat up a large pan (with the lid).  Throw the dough ball in the pan.  Bake.  Cool.  Devour!  That's it!


Crusty Bread - No Need to Knead!
Recipe by Simply So Good

Ingredients:

3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (plus a little more for dusting surface later)
1 3/4 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon yeast
1 1/2 cups water (or a little more if your dough is too dry ... I needed a few more tablespoons of water)
 
Directions:
 
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, salt and yeast. Add water and mix until a shaggy mixture forms. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and set aside for 12 - 18 hours. Overnight works great.  (I let mine sit for just over 13 hours.)

Heat oven to 450 degrees. When the oven has reached 450 degrees, place a large cast iron pot with a lid in the oven and heat the pot for 30 minutes. (Cast iron is suggested in the original recipe, but the author does offer that any large pot with a lid that can withstand 450 degree oven temperatures will work.)

Meanwhile, pour dough onto a heavily floured surface and shape into a ball. It will be extremely sticky. Use flour on your hands to manage and shape dough.


Cover with plastic wrap and let sit while the pot is heating. Remove hot pot from the oven and drop in the dough. (Do this carefully as the pot will be extremely HOT!)

Cover and return to oven for 30 minutes.

After 30 minutes, remove the lid and bake an additional 15 minutes. Remove bread from oven and place on a cooling rack to cool. 

NOTE:  Next time I make this I will try brushing some of the excess flour off of the dough with a pastry brush.  I didn't realize how much was actually on there prior to baking. 
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13 comments :

  1. I love these breads! Your loaf looks gorgeous :-). My favorite no knead recipe is from Artisan Bread in 5 minutes a day. I think it's even simpler than this one. And they have tons of variations in the book. There is a free video of their master recipe on line, if you are curious to try.

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  2. Hi, Cooking Rookie! Thanks for visiting! I will have to check out the Artisan Bread you mentioned! Thank you! :)

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  3. This looks like a perfect bread recipe to try with my le creuset pot. I've never made crusty bread before (just quick or beer bread), so I'm eager to do so. The only problem is that I'm horrible at planning ahead so that the dough can sit for 12+ hours. I need to just make myself do it the night before. Of course, I always wait until inspiration or a craving hits a few hours before meal time, instead. ;)

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    1. Elaina, your le creuset pot would work wonderfully for this bread! Please let me know if you make this and how it turns out for you! It is totally worth the planning and waiting! ;)

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    2. I have used this recipe without waiting 12+ hours, but instead three or four and it still turns out great. I set my bowl of dough in a warm area of the house as it is rising.

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  4. I had a glass pot and it worked greata

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  5. how long did you heat the glass pot before adding the mix ?

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  6. Wish recipes were in grams instead of cups
    Cups aren't used much in UK

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  7. I have made this bread so many times....I love it and so does everyone I give a loaf to. My problem is what do I wrap the loaf in when giving to someone. It always seems to get soft in transport. I know once you cut into the bread you place cut side down on wooden cutting board. thank you Toni

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    1. I am not an expert in how to gift homemade bread, but one suggestion would be to wrap it in parchment paper or brown paper (like from a paper grocery bag), then tie it with a pretty string or lightly tape it closed on the bottom of the loaf. As long as you were giving it right away, I would think this would keep the crust from getting soft.

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  8. I'd like to try different add ins. Measurements? Suggestions.?
    I have made this bread so many times and gifted it as well. It turns out perfect every time and is enjoyed by all who have eaten it. I have shared the recipe many times as well.

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    1. Here is where you can find some add-in suggestions and measurements: http://www.simplysogood.com/2010/03/crusty-bread.html

      Just scroll down a little and you'll see where she gives some ideas for what she's used. Hope that helps!

      Angela

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