Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Nearly no-knead bread

Posted by Pepper

I'm not sure if it is a nesting reaction to the cold weather or what, but I am really in the mood to make some homemade bread. I would have done this over the past weekend, but I hurt my wrist playing racquetball and could not fathom kneading bread dough...unless Salt wanted to see me cry like a little girl from the pain it would have caused. And nobody wants to see that, right?

But I just came across a recipe for a nearly no-knead bread that I am going to have to try this in a few days. Why wait until this weekend? It has to sit for 8 to 18 hours before baking it...but for someone who is craving homemade bread and has wrist pains, a no-knead bread sounds like just the ticket!

3 cups unbleached AP flour
1/4 teaspoon instant yeast
1 1/2 teaspoon table salt
3/4 cup plus 2 T. water, at room temp.
1/4 cup plus 2 T. mild flavored lager
1 tablespoon white vinegar


1. Whisk flour, yeast, and salt in large bowl. Add water, beer, and vinegar. Using rubber spatula, fold mixture, scraping up dry flour from bottom of bowl until shaggy ball forms. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 8 to 18 hours.

2. Lay 12- by 18-inch sheet of parchment paper inside 10-inch skillet and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Transfer dough to lightly floured work surface and knead 10 to 15 times. Shape dough into ball by pulling edges into middle. Transfer dough, seam-side down, to parchment-lined skillet and spray surface of dough with nonstick cooking spray. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature until dough has doubled in size and does not readily spring back when poked with finger, about 2 hours.

3. About 30 minutes before baking, adjust oven rack to lowest position, place 6- to 8-quart heavy-bottomed Dutch oven (with lid) on rack, and heat oven to 500 degrees. Lightly flour top of dough and, using razor blade or sharp knife, make one 6-inch-long, 1/2-inch-deep slit along top of dough. Carefully remove pot from oven and remove lid. Pick up dough by lifting parchment overhang and lower into pot (let any excess parchment hang over pot edge). Cover pot and place in oven. Reduce oven temperature to 425 degrees and bake covered for 30 minutes. Remove lid and continue to bake until loaf is deep brown and instant-read thermometer inserted into center registers 210 degrees, 20 to 30 minutes longer. Carefully remove bread from pot; transfer to wire rack and cool to room temperature, about 2 hours.

(Source: Cooks Illustrated)


  1. This bread looks amazing, will make it tomorrow!

  2. You should take a look at Nancy Baggett's kneadlessly simple bread book. She has tons of different no knead bread recipes. Here's her website There's a recipe archive that gives you different recipes to try. Happy Baking!