Monday, January 15, 2007

The Ubiquitous No-Knead Bread Post

Okay, everyone has tried this recipe, everyone loves it. Count me in! The illustration is my 2nd attempt at the lovely golden loaf. Both attempts were delicious and entirely whole-wheat. Thanks to MC for bringing this to my attention!

You can find the recipe anywhere online (all food blogs seemed to have re-posted it), but it is basically 3 cups flour, 1/4 t. yeast, 1 1/4 t. salt, and 1 5/8 cups water. Because I was going for a 100% whole-what loaf, I messed around with these numbers a bit, and on my second attempt added a new ingredient. My first loaf I made with (believe it or not) whole-wheat pastry flour, because I had it around the house. Turned out nicely, not as much lift as I would have liked, but tasty all the same, with lovely desirable air-pockets. Second loaf I used King Arthur White Whole Wheat Flour, and added 1 1/2 t. vital wheat gluten per cup of flour. I also doubled the yeast, as whole wheat flour is a bit heavier than AP. Because Our Hero and I are crazy cheap, we keep our home at a chilly 60 degrees. To help with the rise (which the recipe recommends 12-18 hours at 70 degrees), I kept the dough in the bathroom (thanks to a recommendation from BA) with the door closed. This kept it slightly warmer than 60 degrees, when Our Hero remembered to keep the door closed (ahem). Even with these less-than-scientific conditions, it worked out great. I let it rise for 20-24 hours instead, which is actually more convenient, if you think about it.

The recipe states to bake in a 6-8 quart covered dish. Mine worked fine in a 5-quart cast-iron dutch oven. Even if you're not a bread baker, this is too easy not to try! BA has recommended tossing herbs into the dough, which sounds delicious. Because I've been having mine toasted as breakfast bread (with PB), I've thus far omitted the savory herbs. I plan to make another loaf soon, so I'll keep you all posted!

The best part about homemade whole-wheat bread for breakfast? No high fructose corn syrup, which is in so many whole-wheat products, including my beloved Thomas' 100% Whole-Wheat English Muffins. Sniffle.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Way to go on the bread Katie! I've found that even with herbs added, the bread still toasts very nicely. I have a rye/caraway seed loaf going now. I used 2/3 c. of rye flour and 2 1/3 c. of unbleached KA bread flour. Also added 1 Tbs. of gluten and a generous Tbs. of caraway seeds. We'll see... Keep experimenting! BA