Tuesday, May 19, 2009

no knead bread revisions

I've made some revisions that have made this easy recipe even easier (they are in red, the original instructions are in black):

Yield: one 1 lb loaf3 cups bread flour
1/4 teaspoon instant yeast
3/4 tablespoon kosher salt (or 1 teaspoon table salt)
1 1/2 cups warm water

Covered pot (I used my All Clad Stainless dutch oven. A pot like a Le Creusets would work well too, just something that can go into a 450F oven.)

1. Mix dough: The night before, combine all ingredients in a big bowl with a wooden spoon until the dough just comes together. It will be a shaggy, doughy mess. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit 12-20 hours on counter top (I've even had one go for 22 hours, no biggie).

2. Shape & preheat: The dough will now be wet, sticky and bubbly. With a wet spatula, dump the dough on a floured surface. Fold ends of dough over a few times with the spatula and nudge it into a ball shape. You can use your hands if you like, just keep your hands wet so that the dough does not stick. Generously dust a cotton towel (not terrycloth) with flour. Set dough seam side down on top of towel. Fold towel over the dough. Let it rest for 2 hours. When you've got about a half hour left, slip your covered pot into the oven and preheat to 450F.
pull out the doughy mess onto a floured surface. Rough it up a bit by folding it over itself and kneading it once or twice, dusting with flour if too sticky. Grease a clean bowl, throw the dough in, and cover. Proceed with original instructions...for me, the towel was messy and unnecessary, in fact, my bread rose higher this way.

3. Bake: Your dough should have doubled in size (mine didn't)it does now. Remove pot from oven. Holding towel, dump wobbly dough into pot. It doesn't matter which way it lands. Shake to even dough out. Cover. Bake 30 minutes. Uncover, bake another 15-20 minutes my oven runs hot and it takes 22-23 minutes versus the 15-20 or until the crust is beautifully golden and middle of loaf is 210F. Remove and let cool on wired rack. If not eating right away, you can re-crisp crust in 350F oven for 10 minutes.
I used my largest soup pot originally and there was room all around the loaf, I now use a smaller one and the loaf rises and bakes taller, which I like. If you prefer a wider, thinner loaf, use your largest pot.
There are several places you can get variations on this recipe, I used the one from "The Steamy Kitchen"

we are baking loaf three as I write this...it really is THAT good. I added Italian seasonings on loaf two and it was delish! Tonight's is plain, but I see an Asiago loaf in the very near future ( and this time it did smell like fresh bread).


  1. I haven't found instant yeast. I have "fast rise"--is that fast enough???

  2. I haven't found it either. Use what you have. I use the standard grocery store (3 envelopes that come together type). Good luck...take pics :)