Recipes for No Knead and Other Tasty Breads

| October/November 2007

The process of baking bread is like an homage to our past: One of our oldest foods is also one of the most satisfying to create from scratch. The smell of the classic heart-warmer can no doubt warm spirits on even the chilliest of days. As fall settles in, here are some tasty recipes for those with bread machines or sturdy palms: The no knead recipe requires neither.

Fast White Bread
From The Joy of Cooking

This is a quick and easy yeast bread designed to work with quick-rise yeast, regular active dry yeast works too. Stir together in a large bowl or the bowl of a heavy-duty mixer:

2 cups bread flour
1 tbsp. sugar
1 package (2? teaspoons) quick-rise or active dry yeast
1? tsp. salt

1 cup very warm (115 to 125 degrees) water
2 tbsp. butter or margarine, melted or softened

Mix by hand or on low speed for 1 minute. Add ? cup at a time until the dough is moist but not sticky:
1 to 1? cups bread flour

susan tyree
10/8/2007 12:00:00 AM

I would like to see a little more fiber involved. These recipes are mostly white flour. I make a delicious loaf of whole wheat and white whole wheat bread (whole wheat of a lighter color).One reason I started making bread was to get a healthier loaf. I enjoy kneading it, but there may be a way to do it without kneading.Thank you, Susan

barb farmer
10/6/2007 12:00:00 AM

Did the writer try Suzanne Dunaway's book "No Need To Knead"? It's wonderful. There is a focaccia recipe that is so easy & good - mix sticky dough - rest 60-90 mins - dump and stretch onto a baking sheet - voila! Looking forard to the article in M.E.News.

becky matheny
10/6/2007 12:00:00 AM

Wow! These "No-Knead" recipes sounds like going to a lot of bother to avoid a little bother!I do have one no-knead recipe that works well, from an Old Betty Crocker cookbook, cira. 1961, made with an electric mixer (heavy-duty NOT required). It's called "Streamlined White Bread" and can be adapted with correct proportioning, to use whole wheat flour. The recipe can be found at my blog, Still, that bread has a slightly less fine texture, in my opinion,than kneaded bread.Maybe I'm kind of simple-minded, but for me, it's a lot easier to just use a kneaded bread recipe. Thank God for heavy-duty mixers! :)

jane jones
10/6/2007 12:00:00 AM

Thank you Jaime for your great comments and sense of adventure!This recipe reminds me of one I used to make in Austraila in the 1990's, which I think I got from Grass Roots magazine. The sticky mess produced at the end of the first rise was unbelievable as something that would produce a good loaf of bread, and yet somehow it did! I used wholewheat flour, and also changed things a bit at the end of the first rise, by adding a cup or two of presoaked mixed grains and seeds like buckwheat, oats, barley, rye, linseed, sunflower seeds. I then turned the mess onto a well floured work surface, sprinkled flour over the top, and worked the flour in with my hands until the mix wasn't so sticky anymore. It wasn't really kneading, just turning the bread in on itself as I added more flour, this stage took a few minutes only. It surely was messy though, as my hands ended up coated with a lot of the dough even if I floured then really well first. Fun too though- like playdough for grown-ups! I then shaped the dough into two loaves, and put then into bread tins for the second rise. This recipe produced a lovely moist heavy bread, like proper rye bread, which stayed fresh for a week. I also used the same recipe to make bagels. Time to get baking again I think!

alvie conboy
10/5/2007 12:00:00 AM

I just wanted to comment on the writer's personal notes on the "No Knead" recipe. It was written very well and gave me a good chuckle!!Thank you!

miriam mcfadden
10/5/2007 12:00:00 AM

I can't believe that my favorite magazine is so uninlightened as to continue to publish recipes with refined white flour. For those of you also uninlightened, white flour (also known as enriched flour, all purpose flour, bread flour, unbleached flour or any name other than 100% whole grain) has most of the nutrients removed and is one of the contributors to the obesity epidemic in the United States as well as diabetes and cardiovascular diseases.

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