No-Knead Artisan Bread

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No-knead and practically fool-proof artisan bread with a crusty exterior and a light and tender interior. If you are a novice bread baker, you need to try this out!

No-Knead Artisan Bread
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If you are a loyal Grey's Anatomy follower like me, you must have been grieving after the last episode. I think all of us fans were screaming a collective, "SAY IT ISN'T SO!" How could they kill off McDreamy? Whose McDreamy eyes am I supposed to look at now that he is gone? (I really hope my husband isn't reading this post!) Fortunately, I love all the characters and the writing, so I'll continue to watch...but under protest.


I had to drown my sorrow in some food. Luckily, there were some freshly baked bread in the house. I mourned Dr. Derek Sheperd's death with a couple slices of this beautiful, home-made, crusty artisan bread. It almost made me forget about the Mcfreaking untimely demise...almost.


No-Knead Artisan Bread



I enjoy making yeast bread, especially fuss-free ones. This recipe is a combination of Mel's Kitchen Cafe  and my own twist. When I find a yeast bread recipe that is no-knead, has few ingredients, and looks great, I'm on it. From the very first batch, I had great results with a hard crust and springy, tender interior. I have tried some no-knead recipes before that resulted in a leaden bread, but not this one. This one is perfect!


No-Knead Artisan Bread



There are no electrical gadgets needed to make this artisan bread, just bowls and a wooden spoon. I start by combining warm water and yeast in a large mixing bowl and set them aside for 5 minutes to allow the yeast to bloom. The original recipe combined water, yeast, flour, and salt all at once. My method extends the prep time a few minutes, but I think it is worth the investment. It allows me to immediately see if my yeast is still alive and active, especially if I am using ones that have been sitting around a while. When all of the ingredients are combined at once, the only way to tell that the yeast is no good is if the dough does not proof. If it does not, it is back to square one because flat, unrisen bread dough make frisbees.

The next step is to add the flour and salt to the yeast mixture. I recommend adding a half cup shy of the total. Stir to blend, adding enough of the remaining flour, if needed, until the desired dough consistency is achieved. I made this recipe twice. The first time, I had to add a little extra water because I used the entire flour amount right off the bat. The resulting dough was too dry. The second time, my dough was too wet, even after using the full amount of flour. I had to add more flour to firm up the dough. In either case, the desired end consistency should be wet and sticky, yet stretches when pulled. 


No-Knead Artisan Bread



Once mixed the dough is allowed to rest in a warm spot for at least 2 and up to 5 hours. The longer the dough is allowed to proof, the better the flavor. After this first rise, the dough is shaped and allowed to rest for 40 additional minutes. At this point, it is slashed on top, dusted with flour. The loaf is then baked on a parchment paper lined baking stone or sheet pan over a steaming tray. When the bread comes out of the oven it looks like this!  Yum!

No-Knead Artisan Bread



I am not really a masterful bread baker, but this is the result I get using this recipe. The picture above was my second batch. How good does that look? Makes you want to run into the kitchen and whip up a batch doesn't it? Go right now! And have fun!




No-Knead Artisan Bread
Adapted slightly from Mel's Kitchen Cafe





INGREDIENTS:

3 cups warm water 
1 1/2 tbsp. active dry yeast
1 1/3 leveled tbsp. salt
6 1/2 cups all-purpose flour




INSTRUCTIONS:

In a large mixing bowl, add water and stir in yeast. Allow yeast to bloom for 5 minutes. Yeast mixture should be foamy and bubbly. In a separate bowl, combine flour and salt. Stir to blend. Add flour mixture (minus 1/2 cup) to the yeast mixture. Stir with a wooden spoon to incorporate. The dough consistency desired should be sticky but stretches when pulled. If dough is too wet, add flour, a couple tablespoons at a time. If dough is at too dry, add water, 1 tablespoon at a time. 


yeast blooming in a bowl
yeast blooming 

stretchy bread dough
bread dough should be sticky, smooth, and
stretches when pulled



proofed bread dough in a bowl
proofed bread dough


Scrape dough off sides of the bowl. Grease the underside of a large plastic wrap. Cover bowl with wrap and cut several slits for circulation. Place in a warm area and allow to proof or rise for at least 2 and up to 5 hours. The dough should at least doubled in size and be sticky and elastic. At this point it could be baked right away or refrigerated for up to 2 weeks. 

To bake right away, prep oven. Place a broiler pan on the bottom rack of the oven. If using a baking stone, place on rack positioned in the middle of the oven. Preheat oven at 450 F. Preheat stone at that temperature for at least 20 minutes prior to baking. If using a baking sheet, place it (inverted) on the middle rack 10 minutes prior to baking.

Place a sheet of parchment paper on an inverted baking sheet (rim side down). Using well-floured hands, divide dough into two equal halves. Working with one of the halves at a time, place dough onto a well-floured work surface. Shape the dough into a loaf, stretching surface slightly, with the seam side down. Add more flour, if needed, to hands and work surface if dough sticks. Place loaf on top of the parchment paper. Allow dough to rest, uncovered or lightly covered, for 40 minutes. After resting, dust surface with flour and make 3 to 4 large horizontal slashes on top. Picking up the entire inverted baking sheet, slide parchment paper and dough onto the baking stone or baking sheet. Pour 1 cup of hot water into the broiler pan and immediately close the oven door. Bake until bread is crusty and well browned, about  26-30 minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack. Makes 2 loaves.


Note: Refrigerated dough needs to rest at room temp for 1 1/2 hour for the second rise.



27 comments:

Stephanie said...

No knead bread, YEAAAHH! I've been on a bread bender lately (both a good thing and a bad thing!)- I love your pics and instructions so we know just what to expect with the dough, that's the only way I'll end up making bread right! ;) Pinning!

Kathleen | HapaNom said...

I have been meaning to try my hand at no-knead bread! This looks so soft and pillowy - just fabulous!

Annie @ The Garlic Diaries said...

Um...girl. I was so angry about McDreamy dying. Shonda Rhimes made a bad call there. Christina AND Derek gone?? Ugh. SO mad. This bread looks amazing though :). And I love that you don't have to knead!

In Good Flavor /Food for the Finicky said...

Thanks for the pin, Stephanie! I could have probably used a one or two more pics, but at least I was able to get the essential ones in. Have a great week!

In Good Flavor /Food for the Finicky said...

I was pleased with the result the very first time I made it. I think you will too!

In Good Flavor /Food for the Finicky said...

I loved Christina...at least she is not dead. I might need to binge watch old episodes because I will probably be suffering from McDreamy withdrawals. Shonda definitely was trying to show who's the boss. I'm glad you like the bread. This is a great recipe if you don't feel like putting in some elbow grease!

Kelly said...

Love no knead breads! Yours looks perfect!

Christin@SpicySouthernKitchen said...

This bread looks so good and I love that there is no need for a mixer or any kneading!

Lynn | The Road to Honey said...

Nothing beats fresh bread from the oven. I used to make a fresh loaf every week but now I'm low carbing it so no bread for me. Your loaf does look lovely, even better that no kneading is required!

In Good Flavor /Food for the Finicky said...

Thanks Kelly!

In Good Flavor /Food for the Finicky said...

Thanks Christin! It doesn't get much easier than this!

In Good Flavor /Food for the Finicky said...

You, my friend, know your way around bread! I only make an occasional batch. The thing I love about working with yeast bread is to see the transformation of a dense mass of dough into a pillowy cloud. It never gets old! The benefits of your low carbing is going to be so worthwhile. All the best with it!

Shelby @ Go Eat and Repeat said...

I love that this bread is no knead! I never know if I over or under knead it, so this makes it nice and easy!

In Good Flavor /Food for the Finicky said...

It is super easy, and it has worked out well for me. I hope you give it a try!

Karrie@TastyEverAfter said...

That bread is perfect!!

In Good Flavor /Food for the Finicky said...

Thank you, Karrie!

Julie Evink said...

Ugh. Grey's. Seriously. We were all needing some of this amazing bread to drown our sorrows in!

In Good Flavor /Food for the Finicky said...

The bread worked for a while, but I saw last night's show...think I need to move onto a margarita. ;) Seriously, no Christina and now no Derek? It's hard to swallow.

Lindsey Farr said...

LOVE this bread! It seriously looks so soft, I just want to take a nap with with.

Marcie FlavortheMoments said...

I haven't watched Grey's for years, and I couldn't believe they killed McDreamy...really?! This bread looks so soft and fluffy, and if it's no-knead, I'm in! :)

Marcie FlavortheMoments said...

I haven't watched Grey's for years, and I couldn't believe they killed McDreamy...really?! This bread looks so soft and fluffy, and if it's no-knead, I'm in! :)

In Good Flavor /Food for the Finicky said...

It was a sad, defining moment for the show and for TV dramas. :( Soft and fluffy is what you will get with this recipe. It is a keeper!

In Good Flavor /Food for the Finicky said...

Haha! That's a good idea! And to think, you will smell like fresh baked bread when you wake up! Better than any perfume in my book!

Miz Helen said...

Bread is my weakness, this looks amazing! Hope you are having a great week and thanks so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
Come Back Soon!
Miz Helen

In Good Flavor /Food for the Finicky said...

Thank you, Miz Helen! I appreciate you stopping by.

Nagi@RecipeTinEats said...

I'm not a Grey's Anatomy fan but even I heard they killed McDreamy off!! Any point in watching now?? So weird!

I've seen no knead artisan bread "around" before but this is the first time I've read a post...it's really that easy? Gotta try this!!

In Good Flavor /Food for the Finicky said...

I'm still in mourning, but I'll keep on watching...out of loyalty...until they pull another fast one...at which point I'll pull the plug. This recipe is really that easy, Nagi. I'm all about quick and easy yeast bread, and this one produced consistent results. It's a keeper!

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