No-Knead Redux

No-Knead Redux

bread2.JPG
I’ve been tinkering with this recipe for weeks, and I’ve come up with a recipe I’m thrilled with. It’s easy, rises beautifully, and gives a loaf that’s got a great shattery crust, and a holey chewy crumb. And it’s so easy — five minutes to mix the dough in the morning, stick it on top of the fridge for 24 hours (my house hovers between 60 and 65 degrees, so a longer rise is necessary), then plop it on a board, shape it, and I’ve been letting it do the last rise wrapped in a floured towel and held in a mesh colander so it gets a nice skin on it. When I let it rise in a bowl, it stayed too wet, and the crust didn’t set right. Here’s the recipe I’ve been working with:
3 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1 tbsp. salt
1/4 teaspoon yeast
1 cup sourdough starter
1 1/4 cup tepid water

Mix it all together in a large bowl until the dough is, famously, “shaggy.” Here’s what my “shaggy” dough looks like:

wetdough.JPG
As you can see, it’s very wet. The wetness seems to allow it to
ferment properly. Generally I start this dough in the morning, then put
it on top of the fridge, and the next morning I pull it down, shape it,
and let it rise the second time. The original recipe says to let it
rise for two hours, but I find it takes more like three (again, my
house is cool in the winter). Then into the big red Le Cruset pot and
out it comes, magically crusty and lovely and holey. I love this bread.
It’s easy. It’s yummy. And it’s fun. What more could we want for a new
year?

2 thoughts on “No-Knead Redux

  1. That looks delicious! While I do a lot of cooking, my wife is the baker in the family. She has been making breads mostly from No Need to Knead by Suzanne Dunaway, so your recipe looks right up her alley.

  2. Hello to everyone coming in from America’s Test kitchen — and thanks to ShirleyT for her nice comment on the tweaks I made to the recipe.

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