Do you like what you see here? Please tell me that you do, and it looks like I have put in a lot of effort, it looks like its been baked by someone who's been baking breads for years! Because I did not! I mean I am new to baking breads and haven't baked scores of them, well, not just yet! And I definitely did not need to knead it with a stop-watch beside me. Yes, this is another no-knead bread or a batter bread. No-Knead Spicy Buns were a revelation, getting great bread with almost no effort. That bread made me lazy...and then I came across this recipe on Allrecipes.com and decided to see how laziness would look in a loaf. And I must say, the bread came out pretty good!
All you need is a hand mixer or strong arms( In the latter case, you would want to post a blaster-comment here - when you recover from achy arms) So let me rephrase and say, you need a hand mixer and good yeast to make this bread. And then you can serve this to innocent folks and just pretend that you have slogged over the bread. Nice thought? You bet! And now let me share this recipe which will give you a light and flavorful loaf and confidence in baking breads if you have not baked bread yet...
here. Please do read the reviews here for any variations you may want to try. Ahem..but don't forget come back here to read the rest of my post!
Apart from a reduction in the quantity of salt and sugar, the recipe remains the same. I wanted a bread which would be slightly salty. I made 1 loaf in a 9*5 loaf pan.
Instant Yeast : 2 1/4 teaspoons
Oil - 2 tablespoons
Sugar - 1 tablespoon
Warm water - 1 1/4 Cups
1 1/4 teaspoon salt
All Purpose Flour, sifted - 3 cups( 375 grams) Please refer note
Melted butter for brushing - optional
Procedure: Grease a 9'' * 5'' loaf tin. Mix together the oil, sugar, salt, yeast and 1 1/5 cup of flour in a large bowl. Add warm water and beat with an electric mixer for 3 minutes. I did this on low speed. The other option is 300 strokes with your hand. And I don't know if there is a third easier option. Tell me if you know:-)
Add the remaining flour and mix well till you get a smooth dough. The dough will be sticky, but not very loose. You could transfer the dough to an oiled bowl in which the dough will come half way up. This way you know that the dough has doubled when it reaches the top of the vessel. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let the dough rise till double in volume. With the mercury shooting up, this takes lesser time, say about 30-35 minutes. So keep an eye. You do not want an over-risen dough(if there is such a term!).
Once the dough doubles, gently deflate and transfer it to the greased loaf pan. You can oil your hands to pat the dough into shape. Cover with a greased aluminum foil and let rise again till double in volume. Its important to grease the foil or it will stick to the top of the risen dough. When you feel away the foil...aaagh!!! some part of the dough will come along with it. It happened to me..the torn loaf broke my heart :-) so I am telling you to learn from my mistake...
When the dough has almost doubled, pre-heat the oven to 190 degrees C or 375 degrees F. The bread was baked in about 40 minutes. The recipe says bake for 45 minutes, I checked it 5 minutes earlier. The bottom crust must sound hollow when tapped. Or the reading on your instant read thermometer must be between 200F to 210 F. The bread did not brown much (probably because of less sugar?) and I put it under the grill for a minute.
Brush the top with melted butter and allow the bread to cool in the tin for 10 minutes. Remove it from the tin and cool completely on a wire rack. Slice when it comes to room temperature.
The top is slightly uneven as the dough is too soft and sticky for shaping..
The bread is light and airy and quite soft. I should have probably checked for doneness even earlier. The slight saltiness makes it a perfect bread for savory toppings or just plain toast.
Note on APF measurement here: The recipe calls for 3 cups of sifted flour. Which is flour first sifted and then measured and not the other way round. I have sifted, scooped into the cup and measured. Then weighed it to be doubly sure.
A closer look at the bread. Not bad at all for a no-knead recipe right? Do try this out and let me know how you liked it..
If you are new to baking breads, do read the below posts for better success rates!.
Know Your Yeast
Basics About Yeast Breads
The bread goes to Susan's Yeast Spotting. And to Champa's Bake Off. Am also sending this to BBD#38, hosted by Cindystar, the theme is no-knead breads.