Saturday, August 18, 2012

Cravin some Artisan

So not long ago, Jared learned to bake the most wonderful bread. We use it to impress all our friends. I even bought a special dutch oven just so we could bake it better (the pan we used previously was too small). Please help yourselves to make this and fall in love. Just like I did. With both Man and his Bread.

No Knead Artisan Bread
slightly adapted from Jim Lahey’s My Bread

Wait time: 2o hours and 30 minutes. But so worth every second 

6 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for work surface (bread flour is recommended, but we never have that on hand when the craving strikes)
1/2 t. instant or active-dry yeast
2 1/2 t. salt
2 2/3 c. cool water

  1. In a large bowl, combine the flour, yeast, and salt. Add the water and stir until all the ingredients are well incorporated; the dough should be wet and sticky. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Let the bowl of dough rest 12-18 hours on the counter at room temperature. When the surface of the risen dough has darkened slightly, smells yeasty, and is dotted with bubbles, it is ready.
  2. Lightly flour your hands and a work surface. Place dough on work surface and sprinkle with more flour. Fold the dough over on itself once or twice and, using floured fingers, tuck the dough underneath to form a rough ball.
  3. Generously dust a cotton towel (not terry cloth) with enough flour, cornmeal, or wheat bran to prevent the dough from sticking to the towel as it rises; place dough seam side down on the towel and dust with more flour, cornmeal, or wheat bran. Cover with the edges or a second cotton towel and let rise for about 2 hours, until it has doubled in size.
  4. After about 1 1/2 hours, preheat oven to 425-450 degrees. Place a 6-8 quart heavy covered pot, such as a cast-iron Dutch oven, in the oven as it heats. When the dough has fully risen, carefully remove pot from oven. Remove top towel from dough and slide your hand under the bottom towel; flip the dough over into pot, seam side up. Shake pan once or twice if dough looks unevenly distributed; it will straighten out as it bakes.

  1. Cover and bake for 40-50 minutes. Uncover and continue baking about 5-10 more minutes, until a deep chestnut brown. The internal temp of the bread should be around 200 degrees. You can check this with a meat thermometer, if desired.
  2. Remove the bread from the pot and let it cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.
  3. Enjoy with butter, jam, olive oil and balsamic, cheese, salad, spaghetti sauce, stroganoff, chicken salad, three bean salad, as french toast, with homemade soup, with hot chocolate, or hummus. We have done all this and more. Oh ps. This bread is amazing just by itself, it doesn't need anything else.
We are planning to make this again and again. We have always allowed it to rise the full 18 hours, so of course, it takes careful planning when you start this bread so that you aren't baking at 2 am. Yeah, we've done that too... :)


1 comment:

  1. This looks so PERFECT. Thank you for posting this recipe!