So you know about the No-Knead Bread, right? You know the one everyone’s been talking about since 2006? Stephen made it. Megan made it and has a whole photo set to prove it. Laurie made an incredible-looking loaf. Shana said it’s the only bread she makes. The photos of Carrie‘s bread are amazing. Rex‘s mom made it. Sonya made and blogged it.
So why has it taken me four years to try it? Because honestly, I like kneading. And I’ve never bothered to move on from Jamie’s basic recipe. So after 10 minutes of kneading the bagels, it seemed like an opportune time to try a bread that required no kneading.
And then it stuck. To everything. To the sides of the bowl. To the cutting board, no matter how well floured. Definitely to the towel in which the dough was wrapped. The recipe said it would make a 1 1/2 pound loaf, but mine weighed in at just over a pound – that’s the amount of dough that stuck.
At no point in the rise, lack of kneading, or transferring from bowl to counter to towel to pot did the dough ever resemble a ball – and so, when it came out of the pot, it was still flat – almost as flat as a focaccia. Hiding inside, though, was a wonderful texture born of a very, very slow rise. We’re looking forward to eating it with the pork goulash for dinner tomorrow night.
I’m not sure if I’ll make it again, though. The timing necessitates weekend baking – or a very late weeknight dinner. And then there’s the stickiness, though there are work-arounds for that. What I will try next is the Almost No-Knead variation. But for now I’ll be spreading butter on my flat little loaf.
No-Knead Bread from Jim Lahey at the Sullivan Street Bakery via Mark Bittman at New York Times – I’m also linking to Smitten Kitchen’s post about this recipe, as the comments are full of useful hacks.
0 thoughts on “0822 No-Knead Bread”
You should talk to Jill. She’s made this a couple of times, with different recipes. One time it came out perfect, another time it didn’t seem to work at all.
One time we lost power halfway through baking, and the loaf didn’t rise. I turned it into a giant muffaletta-style sandwich.
I was very attracted to this recipe because kneading seemed like a lost art to me. I’ve never learned how to do it properly, and I only sort of have a vague idea of how it’s done from books.
Although it comes to my attention that that’s really not an excuse because duh, Youtube.
But I really want to make bread-baking a regular practice, so I was very excited about the No-Knead bread. Sometimes it does come out very flat and sometimes less so. It needs to be eaten soon after it’s made, though because it lacks preservatives and will soon dry out and take on the texture of coal.
I feel like I’m always on the lookout for a perfect bread recipe. I don’t think I’ve found it but I really do love the No-Knead.
Just remembered a couple more things:
Re: timing, you can give it a slow rise in the refrigerator, something like 24-72 hours, I can’t remember how long, but I’m pretty sure you’ll need at least 24. That way you can take the dough out right when you get home from work or whenever, lightly knead then form it, then bake a couple hours later. This allows you to have it during the week.
If you make a couple loaves on the weekend and don’t eat them right away, once they start to dry out, store in plastic bags at room temperature to soften them up.