It's that time of year again. Time for baking and keeping the kitchen toasty warm. Our little oven is pretty neglected during our long, hot summers, but the return of cool weather sees me spending more and more time with a dab of flour on my cheek and a toddler at my side, cooking in my very favorite way.
A few years back, a friend introduced me to the new fad of "no-knead" breads made famous by "Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes A Day." It was inspiration for me, someone who had experienced more than her fair share of kneaded bread flops. Without a fancy mixer to help with the kneading, and with the bread machine turning out disappointing loaf after disappointing loaf, I was ready to try something new.
I started with the basic recipe and was instantly a fan, however I do not have the all important baking stone required to truly make artisan bread. This led me to improvise a bit. After I became comfortable with the technique (which is really very simple), I began wanting to try something using whole grains. The basic white flour recipe was delicious, no doubt about it, but for an every day loaf, I wanted something with more nutritional value.
My sister in law gifted me with "Healthy Bread in 5 minutes A Day" for Christmas last year, and after a bit of tweaking for flavor, I've finally come up with what has become our staple. A few of you have emailed me and asked just what bread it is that I am constantly baking, so today I thought I'd share my take on this quick and delicious bread.
Whole Wheat, No Knead Bread In A Pan
Makes 4 Loaves
7 C whole wheat flour
1/4 C gluten
2.5 T yeast
2 T Kosher salt
Mix together and then add:
3 3/4 C warm water gradually, mixing as you go. You may need a bit more water. Use wet hands to combine.
Cover and let rise for 2 hours, should double.
Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks or use some right away!
To use right away, flour your hands and grab a grapefruit sized handful. Shape into a ball and then elongate slightly. Place in a well greased and floured bread pan (I use bacon grease), or line the pan with parchment paper. Let sit for 30 minutes, 40 if the dough was previously refrigerated.
Preheat oven to 450, place shallow baking dish on lower rack.
After 30 minutes of preheating, slash loaf with serrated knife. Pour 1 cup hot water into baking dish in oven and slide loaf onto top rack.
Bake for 30 minutes.
After baking, I immediately turn the loaves out of their pans and place them on a cooling rack. Since they were not baked on a stone, sometimes the bottoms need some air circulation.
This bread is so insanely easy, so insanely good, well, we just can't get enough. I can serve up slice after slice to my little ones, confidently knowing exactly what is in every bite. I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!
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