Lets learn how to make a 5 minute no knead bread. Thanks to a healthy addiction to the Great British Bake Off Show, my desire to bake is more keen than Paul Hollywood’s piercing blue eyes. So I took to the interwebs and found a great article from Leite’s Culinaria on how to make a no knead bread. It’s famously named a ‘5 Minute Artisan Bread’ not because it takes 5 minutes to make, but it takes 5 minutes to lob some dough off and throw it in the oven.

It’s a great way to always, seemingly, have fresh bread in the house. And who doesn’t want their house always smelling like fresh bread?

Also, speaking of the Great British Bake Off, reports say that the show has revitalized the interest in baking. Telegraph.co said this in a 2013 article:

More than three fifths of adults have baked at home at least once this year, compared with only a third in 2011, research by retail analyst Conlumino reveals. A quarter now do so once a week. Analyst Neil Saunders says there has been a “very strong uplift in interest in baking” since Bake Off  began. “The British public have rediscovered the art,” he adds. “It’s one of those activities that’s both enjoyable and practical in that it can save households money.”

So enough jibber jabber, let’s make some bread!

Keep in mind, the actual prep work takes no time at all, but you’ll need to let the dough proof (sit at room temperature) for at least 2 hours. 

INGREDIENTS
3 cups (24 ounces) water, plus more for the broiler tray
1 tablespoon (.35 ounce) granulated yeast (active dry, instant, quick rise, or bread machine is fine)
1 to 1 1/2 tablespoons (.6 to .9 ounce) kosher or other coarse salt, to taste
6 1/2 cups (2 pounds) unbleached all-purpose flour, measured by the scoop-and-sweep method
Cornmeal, for dusting (optional)

DIRECTIONS
1. Microwave the 3 cups water so it feels slightly warmer than body temperature.  Get a large bowl and mix the yeast, warm water, and salt. Don’t worry about getting the yeast to dissolve. Add the flour all at once, then use use wet hands and mix until the flour is completely mixed in. We’re looking for a blobby dough mixture. Don’t knead the dough! We want it uniformly wet and loose enough to conform to the shape of its container. If we knead it we’ll kill the giant bubbles the yeast will make when it’s proofing and baking.

5 minute no knead bread
2. Cover the container loosely and let the dough sit at room temperature until it begins to rise and collapse or at least flatten a little on the top, about 2 hours. Just turn on Netflix and binge for a bit. It’ll be fine.
3. After 2 hours you can start baking with it, thought it’ll be sticky. You could throw it in the fridge overnight, loosely covered. If it’s not vented the gases won’t be able to escape. Your bread won’t like that. You can then find it’s much easier to work with. The dough may shrink in size after some time in the fridge, that’s fine. Just don’t punch the dough down. You want to keep as much gas in the dough as possible. Like I said before, kneading the dough won’t give us the big airy bread we’re wanting. Also, don’t use this dough after 14 days of it’s creation. You’ll thank me later.

5 minute no knead bread
4. So now, whenever the feeling hits you, you can grab a hunk of dough and bake a loaf. If you’re super fancy and have a pizza peel, dust it with cornmeal. This will make it sliding into the oven easier. If you don’t have a pizza peel, just use your cutting board covered in flour. Dust your hands in flour too, because the dough will want to stick to it. You’ll want to stretch the skin of the dough down the sides and to the center of the bottom of the dough.  Do this in a circular motion and eventually you’ll create a ball (or as the French say ‘boule’). This can be tricky but eventually you’ll get it. The bread will still cook if you don’t master this part, so don’t work the dough too much.
5. Preheat the oven to 450°F (230°C) for at least 20 to 30 minutes. Preheat a baking stone on a middle rack for at least 20 to 30 minutes. Place an empty metal broiler tray on any rack that won’t interfere with the rising bread. (Do not use a glass pan as it could shatter.)
6. Dust the top of the raised loaf generously with flour and, using a serrated bread knife, slash a 1/2-inch-deep cross or tic-tac-toe pattern in the top. Protip: spray the knife with some Pam. This will help the dough not stick to the knife. You can leave some flour on the dough, don’t worry.

5 minute no knead bread
7. If you have the pizza peel put your dough ball on there. Jiggle it into the oven and the loaf should land on the baking stone with very little drama. If you don’t have a peel just scoop your hands underneath the ball and place her on the pizza stone. REMEMBER the pizza stone will be hot since it’s been heating up the past 20-30 minutes.

Once our masterpiece is in the oven, quickly, but carefully pour about 1 cup hot water into the broiler tray and immediately shut the oven door to trap the steam.This will help give a nice golden crust to your loaf after it’s baked.

Bake the bread for a total of 30 to 40 minutes, until the crust is richly browned and firm to the touch.

There’s very little chance of the bread drying out since the dough is so wet.

A perfectly baked loaf of bread will ‘sing’ to you. Near the end of it’s bake, take it out and listen to it. You should hear little crackles. I like to also give it a thud with my finger. I don’t want a lot of sound to travel through the loaf. It should sound like the thud was capture by the beautiful dough inside.

When you feel its baked all the way, take it out and put it on a wire rack.

5 minute no knead bread

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You should have a beautiful loaf or two in front of you. You’ll be tempted to cut into it, but don’t. You can do so are your own peril, but you’re shortening the life of the loaf and sacrificing flavor.

Let the loaf cool completely, preferably on a wire rack for the best flavor, texture, and slicing. The longer you let it sit, the more sour it’ll get. Sour in this case just means you’ll get more flavor. The crust may initially soften but will firm when cooled.

After it’s cooled to room temperature, I recommend cutting into it. This is the best time in the loaf’s life. This loaf is performing an opus of gluten and happiness. Whenever you cut into the loaf, you’ve put a time stamp on it. I’d say two days max, before the flavor and texture start to change.

Some people like to make extra loaves, wrap them up and store them in the freezer. This is totally fine, just sprinkle some water on top of it before you heat it back up in the oven. Gives the crust a little crunch.

Also, you can leave the dough out on the counter, uncut for a few days too. Think of the dough as an egg. The crust is protecting the flavor and texture of the bread inside. At most, wrap it up in a clean dish towel so we can protect it from the air around it as much as possible.

Other than that, that’s all I’ve learned from my experience. I encourage you to go and make your own loaves. It’s incredibly easy, delicious and will wow all your family and friends.

I you make your own, share your creation’s pic down below! Let me know how it went!

5 minute no knead bread

 

  • Kelly Burgett

    I’m totally going to try this! For 5 months now I’ve had to be on a crazy diet for breastfeeding. We’ve recently trialed and passed wheat so now’s as good a time as any to try making this! Wahoo! I’ll post a picture when I’ve actually found the time to do it 🙂 By the way, love the blog!

    • Awesome Kelly! Please let me know how you do! I just baked a bread loaf in a boiling pot (with lid) and it came out marvelous. All bread is some yeast, flour, salt, water, time and love. Post you
      r pics when you’ve made yours!