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Minimalist no-knead bread technique

Bread

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#661 Jane Die

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Posted 07 November 2007 - 04:51 PM

Special K, the addition of asiago cheese sounds great. I'll have to give that a try on my next loaf.

Sanrensho, I'm going to try the Wild Yeast Sourdough Starter. Thanks for sharing those links with me!

Kiliki, I'm going to look for Steingarten's mods, because I do think the flavor could be improved, and I thought the rye would do that but sadly it didn't.

What I'm looking for is a flavor and texture like pugliese, with all the effort of the no-knead. :raz: Maybe Steingarten is on to something. I'll research.

#662 sanrensho

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Posted 07 November 2007 - 05:04 PM

Sanrensho, I'm going to try the Wild Yeast Sourdough Starter. Thanks for sharing those links with me!


I wish you good luck with your starter.

Just to let you know, it took a full 5-6 weeks (including a week of dormancy in the fridge) before I had a really active and foamy starter. And it could still be more active, but it seems to be sufficient. So don't be discouraged if your starter is only bubbly in the initial weeks.

Edited by sanrensho, 07 November 2007 - 05:05 PM.

Baker of "impaired" cakes...

#663 llc45

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Posted 07 November 2007 - 07:15 PM


I'm going to try that starter too--this bread is so easy, but for me, it just doesn't have any flavor. 

I haven't read through this whole thread to see if this has been discussed, but Jeffrey Steingarten's modifications of this recipe make a better loaf. His recipe appeared in Vogue but I'll be it's out there, online.

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What modifications did Jeffrey Steingarten make? I found one reference for it where it looks like the proportions are changed slightly. Does this give it more flavor? I am still looking for affordable smaller pot because the one I am using is making too flat a loaf.

#664 Joe Blowe

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Posted 07 November 2007 - 07:52 PM

The 48 hour rise is intriguing . . I'm assuming it helps to develop more flavour?

Yes, I believe it does help the flavor a bit. It's nothing approaching sourdough, but more along the lines of a biga. A touch more complex. And, I should clarify that my experimental loaves are 48 hours in the fridge in addition to 12 to 16 hours on the counter. I've hit the sweet spot a couple of times, but I continue to play around with the timing.

What modifications did Jeffrey Steingarten make?

If you Google Vogue bread "easy riser", you'll come across this blog entry. The ingredients remain the same, but, as you pointed out, the proportions changed slightly...

And, again, I agree that this recipe does not approach the complexity of sourdough flavor, but I don't believe it was ever meant to do that. It's better than your basic grocery store schlock (of which I've purchased about 4 loaves over the past 12 months :biggrin:), and it has spurred on a lot of people (including me) to expand their bread-baking horizons.
So we finish the eighteenth and he's gonna stiff me. And I say, "Hey, Lama, hey, how about a little something, you know, for the effort, you know." And he says, "Oh, uh, there won't be any money. But when you die, on your deathbed, you will receive total consciousness."

So I got that goin' for me, which is nice.

#665 kiliki

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Posted 08 November 2007 - 10:28 AM

What modifications did Jeffrey Steingarten make? I found one reference for it where it looks like the proportions are changed slightly. Does this give it more flavor?


Ditto what Joe Blowe said. It's doesn't have more flavor, except that it has the proper amount of salt (the original Bittman recipe was undersalted IMO), but it makes a nicer looking, better rising loaf.

I am still looking for affordable smaller pot because the one I am using is making too flat a loaf.


Before you spend the money try making Steingarten's loaf (it rises more)--my first loaves, from Bittman's recipe, were pretty flat, and I used the right size Le Creuset.

#666 Wholemeal Crank

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 12:08 AM

Tried a batch today for the first time in a while, and this time I tried a smaller pot. I'd been looking for a heavy pot between 3 and 4 quarts, because my 5 quart dutch oven makes a very spread out loaf. I bought a cute corning ceramic pot of about 2 quarts to see what that would do, and it was definitely too small. Their is a dent in the top of the loaf corresponding to the bottom of the lid. Oops.

Still haven't encountered a clay pot or sandy pot that looked right, but now I have a better idea of what is too small.

#667 weinoo

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 06:46 AM

Still haven't encountered a clay pot or sandy pot that looked right, but now I have a better idea of what is too small.

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Do you think a clay pot or a sandy pot (if you're talking about the Asian cooking vessels) can take the heat needed? Especially when throwing a room temperature proofed dough into said pot?

It does seem that for this recipe, a 3 to 4 quart sized dutch oven is the right size.
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#668 honeye22

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 10:15 AM

Still haven't encountered a clay pot or sandy pot that looked right, but now I have a better idea of what is too small.

View Post

Do you think a clay pot or a sandy pot (if you're talking about the Asian cooking vessels) can take the heat needed? Especially when throwing a room temperature proofed dough into said pot?

It does seem that for this recipe, a 3 to 4 quart sized dutch oven is the right size.

View Post


Hi all, I hope you can help me with this recipe. I tried to spice my loaf up the first time I made it this weekend, and used wheat flour and added oats and honey. My dough wasn't "sticky and shaggy" as the recipe said it was, it was very dense and dry. When I baked the loaf, it didn't rise or anything. It tasted really good, but I'm wondering if I needed to add more water because of the oats? A friend told me I added too much water, but I think it was the exact opposite...I'd like to make a loaf or 2 for Thanksgiving, so any help you can give would be much appreciated.
"No matter where ya go, there ya are....and there ya go!"

#669 Poffertjes

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 10:21 AM

I made it this weekend, and used wheat flour and added oats and honey.  My dough wasn't "sticky and shaggy" as the recipe said it was, it was very dense and dry. When I baked the loaf, it didn't rise or anything.  It tasted really good, but I'm wondering if I needed to add more water because of the oats? 



Wheat flour does require more water, because it sucks it up.
When I've used wheat, I did a mix of wheat and white flour. Usually 1/3 wheat, the rest white.

You should make the basic recipe, so you can get used to the feel of the dough before you start getting fancy. :raz:

#670 weinoo

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 10:28 AM

Hi all, I hope you can help me with this recipe.  I tried to spice my loaf up the first time I made it this weekend, and used wheat flour and added oats and honey.  My dough wasn't "sticky and shaggy" as the recipe said it was, it was very dense and dry. When I baked the loaf, it didn't rise or anything.  It tasted really good, but I'm wondering if I needed to add more water because of the oats?  A friend told me I added too much water, but I think it was the exact opposite...I'd like to make a loaf or 2 for Thanksgiving, so any help you can give would be much appreciated.

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Perhaps the oats should be soaked separately overnight before adding them to the dough...there's no doubt that they will soak up a tremendous amount of water if they're just added "as is."

Wheat flour also requires more water - and your dense and dry loaf probably indicates the need for same.
Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"
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Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

#671 Beanie

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 11:09 AM

Still haven't encountered a clay pot or sandy pot that looked right, but now I have a better idea of what is too small.

View Post

Do you think a clay pot or a sandy pot (if you're talking about the Asian cooking vessels) can take the heat needed? Especially when throwing a room temperature proofed dough into said pot?

It does seem that for this recipe, a 3 to 4 quart sized dutch oven is the right size.

View Post


See my post about using Asian clay pot.
Ilene

#672 Poffertjes

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 11:53 AM

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Perhaps the oats should be soaked separately overnight before adding them to the dough...there's no doubt that they will soak up a tremendous amount of water if they're just added "as is."

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Or add the oats when you first turn out the bread. Thats when I add raisins, when I use this recipe to make raisin bread. Then you don't have to worry about them sucking up water.

#673 honeye22

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Posted 20 November 2007 - 09:29 AM

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Perhaps the oats should be soaked separately overnight before adding them to the dough...there's no doubt that they will soak up a tremendous amount of water if they're just added "as is."

View Post



Or add the oats when you first turn out the bread. Thats when I add raisins, when I use this recipe to make raisin bread. Then you don't have to worry about them sucking up water.

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Well, I mixed up two more batches of dough this morning and used a bit more water and I think I'm on the right track...dough was definitely "shaggy and sticky". Hopefully, when I get home I will have two glorious huge balls of dough ready to be baked!
"No matter where ya go, there ya are....and there ya go!"

#674 Special K

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Posted 20 November 2007 - 09:53 AM

Tried a batch today for the first time in a while, and this time I tried a smaller pot.  I'd been looking for a heavy pot between 3 and 4 quarts, because my 5 quart dutch oven makes a very spread out loaf.  I bought a cute corning ceramic pot of about 2 quarts to see what that would do, and it was definitely too small.  Their is a dent in the top of the loaf corresponding to the bottom of the lid.  Oops.

Still haven't encountered a clay pot or sandy pot that looked right, but now I have a better idea of what is too small.

View Post


I posted elsewhere (the Le Creuset thread) that I bought four little 8 oz covered cocottes (stoneware, not cast iron) halved the recipe, filled each cocotte with a quarter of the dough, and baked (30 min at 500 degrees covered, then 40 minutes uncovered). Perfect little miniature rosemary asiago loaves! Cute as the dickens. Not sticky in the center, as some of my larger loaves have been, so I'd say the smaller the loaf the better.

#675 Joe Blowe

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Posted 20 November 2007 - 10:32 AM

...filled each cocotte with a quarter of the dough, and baked (30 min at 500 degrees covered, then 40 minutes uncovered).

Is that the correct time and temp? 1 hour 10 minutes at 500 degrees?
So we finish the eighteenth and he's gonna stiff me. And I say, "Hey, Lama, hey, how about a little something, you know, for the effort, you know." And he says, "Oh, uh, there won't be any money. But when you die, on your deathbed, you will receive total consciousness."

So I got that goin' for me, which is nice.

#676 Special K

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Posted 20 November 2007 - 11:00 AM

Is that the correct time and temp?  1 hour 10 minutes at 500 degrees?

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Umm, now you've got me wondering. I'm at work now - the notes I took on the recipe are at home. I'll check tonight. That doesn't sound right, does it? Probably I halved both times from the original recipe.

#677 honeye22

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Posted 21 November 2007 - 08:26 AM

Is that the correct time and temp?  1 hour 10 minutes at 500 degrees?

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Umm, now you've got me wondering. I'm at work now - the notes I took on the recipe are at home. I'll check tonight. That doesn't sound right, does it? Probably I halved both times from the original recipe.

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Well, it would appear that I overcompensated and added a bit too much water. The dough was a giant sticky mess, but the bread turned out marginally well. The crust is nice and crunchy, and it has a pretty good crumb, but was still a bit soggy in the middle. I've got a much drier dough at home resting so hopefully I will get it right in time for turkey day!
"No matter where ya go, there ya are....and there ya go!"

#678 Joe Blowe

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Posted 21 November 2007 - 01:33 PM

Another no-knead recipe has been published in today's NYT, titled Soon the Bread Will Be Making Itself. The recipe, adapted from "Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day," by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoë François, is reprinted here.

I'll be trying this out soon as I'm very curious to see how two-week old dough performs!
So we finish the eighteenth and he's gonna stiff me. And I say, "Hey, Lama, hey, how about a little something, you know, for the effort, you know." And he says, "Oh, uh, there won't be any money. But when you die, on your deathbed, you will receive total consciousness."

So I got that goin' for me, which is nice.

#679 eldereno

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Posted 21 November 2007 - 07:12 PM

Another no-knead recipe has been published in today's NYT, titled Soon the Bread Will Be Making Itself.  The recipe, adapted from "Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day," by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoë François, is reprinted here.


This looks quite intriguing. I will certainly be trying this recipe and, if successful, have a new cookbook in my future!!!!

I have made many recipes of the NKB since last year, 2 loaves to be baked first thing tomorrow morning. I agree that there should be some way to boost the flavor BUT they are still better (and greater appreciated by all those who share the loaves) than the typical grocery store fare. Never did bake bread before this recipe, though I own MANY books on bread baking. Always wanted to but found it way too intimidating. Give me another way of baking bread with little hands on, not too much advance planning, with good results....and I'm on board!
Donna

#680 ambra

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Posted 23 November 2007 - 04:42 AM

Hello All,

I am not a big baker and know nothing about baking bread, but reallllllly wanted to try this recipe. Where I live, the bread is delicious, but saltless (on purpose) and I am getting really bored of it!

I am however having trouble with the ingredients! Four supermarkets later, I cannot for the life of me find instant yeast as required for the recipe. It seems strange living in such a bread-centric part of the world (Italy) but alas.....

Maybe I will find it in a different city, but for now...this may be the single stupidest question on record as of yet, but like a said, I am a baking neophyte. Would the recipe work with fresh yeast? And if so, how much?

There is a however, a flour with instant yeast already in it. (?) I don't know what I think about it.

Also, I'm guessing I should use Grano Duro (translated to Hard Flour) in place of AP Flour as opposed to 00 flour which is used for pizza. Or not?

Any help would be greatly appreciated...Thank You. (I looked through all the pages and didn't find anything about fresh yeast, sorry if it's there.)

#681 baroness

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Posted 23 November 2007 - 06:35 AM

You will need more fresh yeast than the dry; the only bread recipe I could find quickly (not a no-knead bread) states 2 Tablespoons dry or 3 oz. fresh yeast . You'll have to handle the conversion to metric......
For flour, use the higher gluten type, the Grano Duro.

#682 ambra

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Posted 23 November 2007 - 08:53 AM

Thanks, so as long as I use the correct amount I can let it rise just as long as with the Instant Yeast?

#683 mhjoseph

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Posted 23 November 2007 - 09:53 AM

You will need more fresh yeast than the dry; the only bread recipe I could find quickly (not a no-knead bread) states 2 Tablespoons dry or 3 oz. fresh yeast . You'll have to handle the conversion to metric......
For flour, use the higher gluten type, the Grano Duro.

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Posted Image

I made the recipe, baking today from dough that's been in the fridge since Wednesday. They look gorgeous, I am saving them for guests tonight so I can't cut them open yet. Sorry about the blurry image, I took it on my Treo, but you get the idea.

The dough was quite wet and hard to work with. The boules spread out a lot and I thought they would be too flat but there was tremendous oven spring. I baked them 40 minutes out the fridge as the recipe called for.

Edited by mhjoseph, 23 November 2007 - 09:54 AM.


#684 Special K

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Posted 26 November 2007 - 08:51 AM

Regarding the little Le Creuset stoneware cocottes for the bread:

Is that the correct time and temp?  1 hour 10 minutes at 500 degrees?

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Umm, now you've got me wondering. I'm at work now - the notes I took on the recipe are at home. I'll check tonight. That doesn't sound right, does it? Probably I halved both times from the original recipe.

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Sorry this is so late - no computer access at home over the holidays. Yes, It was 20 minutes covered, and 30 minutes uncovered. And the cocottes are a cup and a half in volume.

#685 llc45

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Posted 01 December 2007 - 02:54 PM


Another no-knead recipe has been published in today's NYT, titled Soon the Bread Will Be Making Itself.  The recipe, adapted from "Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day," by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoë François, is reprinted here.

I'll be trying this out soon as I'm very curious to see how two-week old dough performs!

View Post


I was so pleased with how the bread turned out that I ordered the book. Just received it in the mail - I am so excited. It has recipes for all different types of peasant bread, bagels, pizza crust, brioche, many sweet bread recipes (OK - I'll stop). I think I am going to try one of the wheat ones next.

The thing I love is that I can make 4 (or 8) at a time. I can make a loaf of bread, then a pizza crust, then a stromboli because I have premade dough ready to go. The first two loaves that I made from the NYT recipe didn't have a lot of sourdough flavor so I am waiting to make the next two to see how much flavor develops. One of the things that the book recommends to get more sourdough flavor is to mix the next batch right in the same bowl without washing. The old dough will then become the "sourdough" started for the new mixture.

Unfortunately, I am busy this next week or two but will definitely be trying many of the sweet breads and brioches as soon as I get time. For every day bread, I have been buying an organic wheat sourdough bread from a great local baker. Now I am going to see if I can get somewhat close with one of the peasant bread recipes that has wheat, rye, and white flour. I also see weekly pizza in my future!

#686 Ophey

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Posted 01 December 2007 - 04:32 PM

The Washington Post Food Section just had an article with some no-knead breads.

The article

Recipes:
Easy Slow-Rise, No-Knead Light Wheat (or White) Bread
Slow-Rise, No-Knead Cinnamon-Raisin Bread
Slow-Rise, No-Knead Rustic Caraway-Beer Bread
Slow-Rise, No-Knead Soft White (or Soft Light Wheat) Rolls

- Ophey

#687 HowardLi

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Posted 01 December 2007 - 11:01 PM

Looks like I'll be heading down to the Chinese supermarket to pick up a clay pot.

Is there anything that can get me the shape of a batard without the cost of the one linked to ($50)?

#688 kiliki

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Posted 03 December 2007 - 11:10 AM

The latest Cook's Illustrated has taken on the recipe. Their main complaint was the same as mine-beautiful loaf, zero flavor. They added 1/4 cup of lager and a little vinegar, and sure enough, the flavor is much better-slightly yeasty and tangy now. But, I doubt I'll make it again. The loaf still isn't as good as bread I can buy just a few blocks away. If I lived in the middle of nowhere, or in the kind of place that only has big chain supermarkets with bad bread, I'd probably make it part of my repertoire.

#689 Pam R

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Posted 03 December 2007 - 11:16 AM

I made a loaf last week. I haven't made it in months and wanted to give it another go. This time I mixed it, left it on the counter for about 6 hours, then tossed it in the fridge for about 20. Onto the counter for another 20 or so.

I think it had more flavour than the other loaves, but next time I'll leave it in the fridge for a couple of days. I'm a fan of the bread but am happy to play with it.

#690 Special K

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Posted 03 December 2007 - 12:13 PM

The latest Cook's Illustrated has taken on the recipe. Their main complaint was the same as mine-beautiful loaf, zero flavor. They added 1/4 cup of lager and a little vinegar, and sure enough, the flavor is much better-slightly yeasty and tangy now. But, I doubt I'll make it again. The loaf still isn't as good as bread I can buy just a few blocks away. If I lived in the middle of nowhere, or in the kind of place that only has big chain supermarkets with bad bread, I'd probably make it part of my repertoire.

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I haven't seen the CI issue yet - did they tinker with the salt? Really, I find that just adding an extra teaspoon of salt makes a huge difference (but I can't seem to help also adding some shaved Asiago or Parmesan and some chopped rosemary, too). I made two loaves yesterday, one in my Romertopf and one in a round Corningware casserole. I've been adding just a little less water than the recipe calls for, and just turning the dough into the hot pot at the end of the 18 hours. Both loaves turned out fine. The lager and vinegar additions sound great - I'll try that next.





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