Monday, March 26, 2007

Knead? No Need! Bread

I've seen the blog entries. I've read the articles. I know that the No Knead bread craze has taken over the vegan blog food world.

While I actually enjoy kneading bread, the promise of the shard-like crust and perfect crumb was the impetus for this... my newest kitchen toy. It's no Le Creuset (there is just NO WAY I'd be able to afford that kind of price tag!) but this 5-qt. apple green enameled cast iron beauty of a dutch oven is all mine, thank you eBay, for less than a quarter of the price of it's fancy, schmancy counterpart. (and I'm not even factoring in the FREE stainless steel dutch oven they threw in by accident and let me keep!).

I honestly had not a single bowl in my collection large enough, Pyrex or otherwise, that I could toss in the oven to try out the no knead bread so this was a delight to finally receive in the mail. Twenty-two hours later and I had this...I used 1/3 whole wheat flour, regular active yeast instead of instant (using about 1/3 tsp) and went with the 1 1/2 c. water that I'd read about over the 1 5/8c. I also measured the needed water in my measuring cup and used a bit of it to proof my yeast first while mixing dry ingredients. I then opted for cornmeal over flour at the end because I love the way it laughs in the face of anything sticking to anything where dough is concerned.

I admit that, at first, I didn't think mine was going to turn out well. It didn't look much like the pictures I'd seen after the first 20 hours, not nearly as wet and sticky, and it didn't rise in the second 2 hour period to double its size as the recipe said it would.

No matter, just look at that amazing loaf!
No, really! Look! And the taste is great, too. I do think it could use a little something, though. I think I may add a little sugar in the yeast proofing step next time. Or maybe some fresh herbs in the dough itself? I do believe that the possibilities for this stuff are endless! But do watch those pearly whites! They're not kidding about the hard exterior. That stuff is serious business...but all kindsa yummy!


Aurelie said...

Wow, I always wondered how that type of bread turns out.

Diz Rivera said...

I'm kicking myself for not checking your blog more often. I'm going on eBay this second and linking you immediately. That teriyaki tempeh looks amazing.

(Go Bruins! heehee)

Kris said...

Our local paper just reprinted this recipe and I've been dying to try it. Like you, I think I'll have to shop around and buy a new dish to make it in. Darn, I hate buying kitchen toys... ;)

Amey said...

oh yay!
I love love love that recipe. I've used it already 4 times, and gotten a wondefully perfect loaf each time. I've also varied the heck out of it - even made one loaf with walnuts and raisins and 1/3 rye flour, and it's always amazing!

Anonymous said...

I've only tried the recipe once and I tried it with 100% white whole wheat flour and it really didn't turn out at all. No rise. So now I'm going to give it another go using some ap flour as well. :( I was really hoping to be able to make it 100% whole wheat.

Candi said...

Congrats on the ebay find! :)

I have not tried this no-knead bread! I'm glad you liked and, and with your new ebay toy, you can experiment to make it even more perfect for you!

I usually add agave nectar in my bread for a sweetener, by the way. I want to experiment with seeds and nuts next though. You know how I am with those hemp seeds! :)

bazu said...

I still have to make that no-knead bread, if only for the fun and fancy process. I love your non-Le Creuset dutch oven! I also have a non-Le Creuset fondue dish from Ikea that I love.

scottishvegan said...

That looks great! Much better than mine turned out!

Anonymous said...

yum! this looks amazing!
great buy!