Wednesday, August 29, 2012

No Knead Bread

   I love a great loaf of bread,but truth be told,I have never been a big fan of working with yeast.Why,I am not sure.I guess I have always found it a bit intimidating...silly,I know, but true.After reading numerous other blogs that boasted about Jim Lahey's No-Knead bread,I figured I would give it a whirl. In the past,I have made other breads that I have loved,but none were actually as simple as this. In case you aren't familiar with Jim Lahey,he is the owner of Sullivan Street Bakery,and his breads are amazing.
    This bread requires starting a day ahead of time...but,it is not a big production.You simply mix together the ingredients,which literally takes 3-5 minutes,cover it with plastic wrap,and forget about it until the next day.So far,so good.Easy stuff,right?
   The following day,you bake it...that's it! Here are the ingredients,and the process.Personally,my first try at this went fairly well.I did use a bit more yeast than his recipe called for,and didn't bake it with the seam facing up,but it still turned out well.I also used active instead of instant yeast(see what I mean,the yeast always gets me), so I will definitely change that tomorrow(yes,going to make it again),and I think it will make a difference.

   Here is his recipe......give it a try,I think you will enjoy it.The loaf I made disappeared in about 5 minutes in my you know it was good.One note of caution cast iron pot came out a lot more worn looking than when it went ,you may not want to use your very best,most expensive pot.

3 c. all purpose flour
1/4 tsp. instant yeast
1-1/4 tsp. salt
1-1/2 c. warm water(not hot)

  In a large bowl, mix together the dry ingredients.Add the water.Mix with your hands until the dough comes together.Cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap,and set it aside.Forget about it for 18-24 hours.

  The next day,preheat your oven to about 450 degrees.Place your cast iron,or pyrex pot with lid on, in the oven and heat it for 30 minutes.
While it is heating,place a cotton cloth on your counter.Sprinkle it with a little flour or wheat germ.Pour the dough,which will look "shaggy", out of the bowl onto the dishcloth.Fold each side in,kind of forming a ball,and place it seam side down on the cloth.
   Once the pot is hot,CAREFULLY,(hot,hot pot) slide your hand under the cloth and flip it over into the pot. Shake the pot a bit,but don't worry too much about the shape..this is a rustic type bread,so it's all good. Place the lid back on and bake for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes,remove the lid,and bake another 15-20 minutes. Remove,cool and enjoy!

  ***I'll keep experimenting with different flavors and see what works best.Jim Lahey also has a version that uses red wine vinegar,so I think that may be my next bread adventure. 
*** Please make sure your oven is clean when cooking anything at such a high temperature.If it isn't,you will have a kitchen full of smoke!

*** Check out other versions of this basic recipe on some of my favorite blogs such as   and .


  1. Wow...great recipe. I am all for easy and especially if this recipe is coming from a baker. Yea! Thanks for sharing this lovely recipe.

  2. I love to share a good thing when I find it!