This multi-grain bread recipe is excerpted from the new book Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day: 100 New Recipes Featuring Whole Grains, Fruits, Vegetables and Gluten-free Ingredients (Thomas Dunne Books, 2009). This is the much-anticipated sequel to the wildly popular Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day: The Discovery That Revolutionizes Home Baking , which taught us how to craft delicious and crusty artisan bread with just a few minutes of work. We brought you that basic technique in our article Five Minutes a Day for Fresh-baked Bread . Now you’ll be able to use the no-knead storage dough method with even healthier recipes. To order either of the fabulous cookbooks (and get a bunch more yummy-but-easy recipes!), visit MOTHER EARTH NEWS Shopping . If you have questions about these recipes, please post them to the comments section at the end of this article, and the baking experts at King Arthur Flour will answer them.
For the 10-grain product, we decided on a nationally available hot cereal from Bob’s Red Mill, rather than the harder-to-find 10-grain flours stocked by natural food co-ops. Either will work, but you may have to adjust the amount of water.
This recipe makes enough dough for four 1-pound loaves, and can easily be doubled or halved.
2 cups 10-grain hot cereal (Bob’s Red Mill brand), uncooked
3 cups white whole wheat flour (made from wheat varieties with pale, mild-tasting bran layers)
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tbsp (2 packets)
1 tbsp kosher salt (or to taste)
1/4 cup vital wheat gluten
3 1/2 cups lukewarm water
1 to 2 tbsp seed mixture for sprinkling on top of the crust: sesame, flaxseed, caraway, sunflower, poppy and/or anise
Whisk together the cereal, flours, yeast, salt and vital wheat gluten in a 5-quart bowl, or a lidded (not airtight) food container.
Add the water and mix without kneading, using a spoon, a food processor (with dough attachment) or a heavy-duty stand mixer (with paddle). You may need to get your hands wet to get the flour to incorporate if not using a machine.
Cover (not airtight), and allow the dough to rest at room temperature until it rises and collapses (or flattens on top), approximately 2 hours.
The dough can be used immediately after the initial rise, though it is easier to handle when cold. Refrigerate it in a lidded (not airtight) container and use over the next week.
On baking day, dust the surface of the refrigerated dough with flour and cut off a 1-pound (grapefruit-size) piece. Dust with more flour and quickly shape it into a ball by stretching the surface of the dough around to the bottom on all four sides, rotating the ball a quarter-turn as you go.
Elongate the ball into an oval. Allow the loaf to rest for 90 minutes (40 minutes if you’re using fresh, unrefrigerated dough), covered loosely with plastic wrap, on a pizza peel prepared with cornmeal or lined with parchment paper. Alternatively, you can let the loaf rest on a silicone mat or a greased cookie sheet.
Thirty minutes before baking time, preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit, with a baking stone near the middle rack. Place an empty broiler tray on any other rack.
Just before baking, use a pastry brush to paint the top crust with water. Sprinkle with the seed mixture and slash the loaf with 1/4-inch-deep parallel cuts, using a serrated knife.
Slide the loaf directly onto the hot stone (or place the silicone mat or cookie sheet on the stone if you used one). Pour a cup of hot water into the broiler tray, and quickly close the oven door. Bake for about 30 minutes, until richly browned and firm. If you used parchment paper, a silicone mat, or a cookie sheet under the loaf, carefully remove it and bake it directly on the stone or an oven shelf at about two-thirds of the way through baking time. (Smaller or larger loaves will require adjustments in resting and baking time.)
Allow to cool on a rack before slicing.
Visit healthybreadinfive.com to find instructional text, photographs, videos and a community of other five-minutes-a-day bakers. Our website is interactive; we answer your questions ourselves. Happy baking, and enjoy all the bread!
More No-Knead Healthy Bread Recipes
Check out Healthy No-knead Bread Recipes for bread baking tips, ideas and nutritional information.