Monday, April 20, 2009

No-knead bread!

I'm not that happy with how any of my little mixed-media collage paintings are looking at the moment, so I'm sharing the bread I'm making tonight instead. The photo is actually from a time I made it a few months ago since tonight's loaf is still in the oven.

I'm more of a cooking person than a baking person, and I've had mixed results with other bread recipes. But I'm really loving this No Knead Bread recipe I got from the New York Times. Seriously, even if you think you're not a baker, give it a try! It's so good and so easy and way cheaper than buying bread from the store!

I make the white bread recipe, but I substitute one cup whole wheat for one of the cups of white flour. You just mix up your flour, yeast, salt, and water, and leave it to rise for four hours. Then you dump your dough out on a flat surface, flip it over and let it sit for another 30 minutes. Then you bake it in some sort of closed container like a dutch oven for 30 minutes. Almost no work involved, and you get a lovely round loaf of bread with a great crispy crust! The closed container is the secret to the crispy crust- apparently professional bakers have special ovens that inject steam while baking. This is very hard to replicate in a regular oven, so using a closed container is like a little steam oven inside your regular oven.

There is another version of the no-knead recipe that involves letting the dough sit for 14 hours, which I tried once. But I liked the 4-hour version much better anyway!