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Central Maine
(This post was last modified: 12-13-2015, 06:33 PM by ShadowsDad.)
Before you get into the recipe, you must know that the recipe stops before the "optional " notes begin. What follows after the recipe are my notes to myself so that when I forget what I've done I can return to doing what's already been tried. Feel free to ignore what follows the recipe, but if one is into bread baking it might help save you some time in your variations. My recipe has pictures of loaves, but they don't come through here. I'll see what I have in Photobucket. (I found the same pix that I have pictured in my recipe)

The recipe follows. Trust me, you can make this bread. I state that I'd make this again in a heartbeat. I have made it dozens of times. I've given the recipe to other bakers and they tell me that they make it frequently also. One bakers family has begged that she make an different bread in the past. Not that it's not delicious but just for some variety.

Artisan no-knead Crusty Bread

This is an exceptionally easy to make, minimal equipment required, recipe that yields a fantastic loaf. It trades a mixer for time. It does take time. But not your time. This is not my recipe, but was developed by another gent and freely given to the public domain. I wish I could remember his name but I can't.

I’d make this again in a heartbeat!

[Image: DSC04103_zps426462a8.jpg]

3 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1 3/4 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon instant yeast
1 1/2 cups water (if you need to proof yeast use part of this)
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, salt and yeast.

Add water and mix until a shaggy mixture forms. It won’t be pretty, just mix it, no kneading!

Cover bowl with plastic wrap and set aside for 12 - 18 hours. Overnight works great.

Heat oven to 450 degrees. When the oven has reached 450 degrees place a cast iron pot with a lid in the oven and heat the pot for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, pour dough onto a heavily floured surface (a silicone mat insures no sticking) and shape into a general  ball shape. Just relax it won’t hold the shape, so don’t sweat it. You tried. Flour the upper surface of the dough also. Cover with plastic wrap and let set while the pot is heating. Reshape the dough again (final shaping). Remove hot pot from the oven and drop the dough in. Everything you turned under to make a nice smooth ball should be next to the bottom of the pot. DO NOT grease or oil the pot in any way (SMOKE!). Have no fear, as long as you preheat the pot your loaf won’t stick. If you have a dedicated water sprayer (for food) give the loaf a few spritzes, but it’s no big deal if you don’t.

Cover and return to oven to bake for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes remove the lid and bake an additional 15 minutes. Bread should be browned and the interior 200°F - 206°F. Remove bread from oven, remove from vessel,  and place on a cooling rack to cool. Internal temp’ is important regardless of the exterior. A dark brown crust is even better if you can manage to do both.

If someone wants to use parchment fold a piece of parchment multiple times, until you can’t fold anymore, then measure off the radius of your cooking vessel from the apex of the parchment and snip with kitchen shears. (Note: I used parchment once, but it simply isn’t needed. I’ve had to nudge only one loaf out of the dutch oven with a metal spatula. )

[Image: DSC04143_zps863c9b67.jpg]

**** OPTIONAL! ****
Notes to tweak the recipe: These are completely optional, but they make the recipe even simpler and easier in some ways, but also yield a better loaf with almost no additional work.
>use bread flour.
> Buy a large silicone work mat. I bought a Paderno from Amazon. It was the most cost effective and really large. You might not want large now, but you might. I think it was near $20. Far less expensive for its size as compared to any of the others. (I just checked,mine is Pederno and is 17.5 x 25.5 inches)
>Buy a bench scraper designed for cooking. It needn’t be the most expensive. Mine cost $5. (Not for the work shop scraper) The bench scraper will have a dull edge, mine has a wooden handle. But there are many designs. Don’t pay extra for a cooks name being attached to it.
>buy a hand sprayer for water and designate it exclusively for food. Don’t use the sprayer you used for RoundUp or to kill the whiteflies on your indoor plants.
> Now that you have a work mat,  bench scraper, and sprayer don’t flour the surface as per the recipe. Instead turn the dough onto one section of the work mat (nothing on the mat) and allow it to rise as the cooking pot and oven come up to heat. Take your bench scraper and bring the dough edges up over the rest of the dough a few times. It’s play, but it‘s also a very mild kneading. It won’t get more intense than that. Work your way around the dough bringing the edges up over the dough and letting them “come together”.  Fill your sprayer with enough water to effectively spray. After the vessel has warmed up and is awaiting the dough, very generously sprinkle semolina or corn meal into the bottom of the pot to prevent it from sticking. Use enough so that the bottom of the pot can't be seen through it. Raise the temperature of your oven to 500°F then  spray another section of the mat with water. Using the same bench scraper technique you used earlier, move the dough onto the watered section of work mat. Wet your hands so that they are visibly and liberally wet. Lift the dough and plop it into the hot vessel. Spray the top of the dough with water so that it’s visibly wet, cover and bake for 30 minutes. After 10 minutes lower the oven temp back down to 450°F and proceed with the remainder of the 30 minutes of covered bake time. The water you used makes nothing stick to the dough, makes for a better crust, and gives a slightly higher loaf.
>Your silicone work mat only needs to be squeegeed off with the bench scraper, and maybe a  towel to sop up the water/flour slurry.  You’ll have the bowl and a bench scraper to wash, but no flour mess to clean up. Plus the dough handles much easier, and the crust is better because of the additional water. Don’t forget to empty your dedicated water sprayer and leave the top loose so as to allow it to dry out.

For the same bread with fewer holes I use the following recipe and work it a bit on the countertop after it rises and before it gets baked. Working it removes some of the gas, and increasing the amounts gives a slightly larger loaf. Just guesstimate the amounts that you can’t measure.
3 3/4 cups flour
2.2 tsps salt
5/8 tsp yeast
scant 2 cups water

The KA bread flour worked great. Slightly more rise than with the AP flour.
The recipe with bread flour.
The procedure is exactly the same as the original recipe. The ingredients are as follows:
410g bread flour (3 cups) Note: this weight will be different for AP flour
9g salt (1 3/4 tsps)
2g yeast (½ tsp)
333g water ( 1 ½ cups)

Made with 100% homeground whole wheat flour
note: the first try with this did NOT work! Next time I plan to sift out the bran. That will at least give the full nutrition of the whole wheat, and the flavor.

381g fresh ground whole hard white wheat flour (3 cups)
1 slightly rounded tsp of ascorbic acid (vitamin C) ______ g

9g salt (1 3/4 tsps)
2g yeast (½ tsp)
333g water ( 1 ½ cups) + _________________________________g

Unknown date

For making in a loaf pan

[Image: DSC04235_zpsme4uvj1o.jpg]

3 3/4 cups bread flour
2.2 tsps salt
5/8 tsp yeast
scant 2 cups water

After knocking the large bubbles out of the dough by rough handling I put it into a sprayed loaf pan to rise until it touched the sprayed plastic wrap. Then baked on the lowest rack in the oven @ 425°F for 45 minutes, 5 minutes in the oven with it turned off, then another 5 minutes in the pyrex loaf pan, then turned out onto a cooling rack and 20 minutes or so to cool off before slicing.

It could use a bit more loft in the final loaf. But this is nothing to turn ones nose up at. It’s a fine loaf.


2nd loaf pan try

[Image: DSC04241_zpsb3wqxbgn.jpg]

I increased the ingredients by 50% over the original recipe

4 ½ cups bread flour
2 5/8 tsps salt
3/4 tsp yeast
2 1/4 cups water (plus a hair more since the dough was too dry IMO)

Same procedure as the loaf directly above, but this dough filled the pan 3/4 full. I allowed it to completely fill the pan before removing the plastic wrap.

Bake it on the lowest rack in the oven. I wound up baking at 425°F for 45 minutes, then another 25 minutes @ 375, and then 10 minutes with the oven off and the door closed. Then out of the oven and keep it in the pyrex loaf pan for another 10 minutes, then turn it out to cool on a rack.

This was good and gave me the loft I was looking for. For more rise try allowing it to rise a bit more before baking.

But this loaf is basically done at this point.

It’s a nice loaf with a very chewy and flavorful interior, and the crust is close to perfect. The hole in the loaf was made by the instant read thermometer probe being inserted 3x.


Used the same 50% increase in ingredients, but to get a bit more oven spring I baked at:
450°F for 20 minutes
Then dropped the temp to 420°F for 25 minutes.
Then 375°F for 10 minutes.
Turned the oven off and kept the loaf in it for another 10 minutes.
Then 10 minutes in the pyrex pan for 10 minutes before turning it out.

The loaf still had a tiny issue with being gummy in the center.

Next time try this:

450° for 20 minutes
then 400 for 50 minutes
10 or 15  minutes with the oven off
10 minutes in the pan

andrewjs18, Marko and Freddy like this post
Brian. Lover of SE razors.
Brian, looks just like the loaf I just took out of the oven. I use the same recipe and have found bread flour works much better than AP flour. More gluten. One day I will get a bag of High Gluten bread flour and try that.  You can't beat this bread for soups and stews. BTW, great crumb on the pan loafs.


  This is where I found the recipe.

Freddy likes this post
“If you think this Universe is bad, you should see some of the others.”  Phillip K. Dick


Super Moderator
San Diego, Cal., USA
Folks, Brian turned me on to this no knead bread on another forum. I had my doubts but, from across 3,000 miles, Brian encouraged me. It was every bit as easy and delicious as he says and, believe me, if I can make it then anyone can. Smile

Central Maine
Charlie, I hate to admit this, but I have a high end mixer and it sees very little mixing use since I discovered this bread. Thankfully it does much more than  mixing. The friend whose family begs her to make another type of bread has a KitchenAid and she says and admits to the same thing... not using her mixer very much any more.

I've used the round loaf for everything and they're great for a deli type sandwich, but the first few slices don't last very long after the loaf comes out of the oven. I agree with Jacques Pepin, there is nothing as good as fresh bread and butter. I think I could eat the entire loaf if I had no self control. I worked on the sandwich loaf just for a more traditional shape for when I have guests. OK, and for when I want a more traditional shape just for us. I really want to perfect the version that uses 100% homeground wheat because I like the flavor of the real stuff. But first we need our oven...

Right now I should be making bread since it's the season (cold), but our new indoor oven hasn't arrived yet, and the old one died at least a month ago. I suppose I could use the outdoor ceramic cooker, but I'm just too lazy to fire it up for bread and besides cooking bread outside doesn't warm up the indoors or put the aroma of baking bread inside.

The link is excellent! So much better than my brief explanation. Thanks!

Since you're a baker would you like a recipe for fast dinner rolls (2 hr)? Again, not my recipe, but given to me by the lady whose family begs her to make "other" bread for a change of pace. They're fast and delicious. I have a picture. But I let them rise too long before baking; or I need a pan with higher walls. :-) I like the recipe because I can  make them in our toaster/broiler and even make them in the summer. The pictured rolls were made in the toaster/broiler.

[Image: DSC04175_zps49f74f30.jpg]

If you or anyone needs other bread recipes just ask. I'm always making bread in the cold weather and trying new recipes. Some work and are keepers and some don't or for some reason I don't like the recipe. I wouldn't give out the latter except as an example of what not to do, as with my notes.
Brian. Lover of SE razors.
Brian, I will take your dinner roll recipe. Thanks. They look great. My kitchenaid mixes a lot of things, but, dough, not so often. I also make pan loaves for things like grilled cheese sandwiches and things along that line.

A nice thick slice of hot bread slathered with butter and honey and a cup of tea.
“If you think this Universe is bad, you should see some of the others.”  Phillip K. Dick


Central Maine
(This post was last modified: 12-07-2015, 01:28 AM by ShadowsDad.)
For bread flour I use King Arthur. A local bread retail bread baker uses Sir Lancelot and I called KA to inquire as to what was different about it. The answer was the 50# bag size. It's identical to what we buy as bread flour in the supermarket. When I want higher protein levels I grind my own from the wheat berry. It has a better flavor too. But not all wheat berries are made the same. One must specify what wheat and with luck where it was grown. I'm lucky as my local healthy food market has a really good supplier that does the work for me. I just specify bread quality white winter wheat and I get good high gluten berries by the 25# sack. I have bought and used "vital wheat gluten" to add to my commercial flour and that helped for certain things, pizza dough mostly. I still use it at times when I don't want to grind wheat.

Bread dough is what killed our KitchenAid Charlie. Go easy on the kneading, slow speed only. Our speed adjuster was screwed up and I didn't know it.

The 2 hour dinner roll recipe follows.

Jane's Easy Yeast Rolls (modified to simplify)

These can be made in 1 ½ - 2 hours from start to finish and are delicious.


3 TBL sugar ( or succinat (sp?); dried sugar cane syrup)
1 tsp salt (Sub’ garlic salt?)
1 TBL dry yeast
4 - 5 cups flour (start with 4 and add additional in 1/4 cup increments the KA mixer will use closer to 5 cups in total)

2 TBL oil/butter
1 1/4 cup warm water (<115°F)
1 beaten egg

Additional flour

Directions (Kitchen Aid and other “motor over beater” stand mixers):

Put the dry ingredients in the mixer bowl and mix with beater.

In a separate bowl add the wet ingredients, egg and oil first and mix, then the water. Add to dry ingredients. The aim is a dough that’s too wet for kneading (loose).

Remove beater and clean into the mixing bowl. Cover and allow to rise to double.

Use dough hook and knead on setting 2 and begin the kneading. Slowly add flour until the dough comes away from the bowl and it all stays on the hook. Clean the sides of the bowl, but there should be very little on it. Be sure it’s all incorporated before finishing this step. Allow to rest 10 minutes. Turn out onto oiled/buttered surface and using buttery/oiled hands make into golf ball size round pieces of dough (adjust size to suit). I find this is easiest if I gather the ball together using my dominant hand while holding the ball of dough in my off hand. Just keep gathering it and pinching it together at the top so that when it's turned over and placed in the pan the pinches will be on the bottom and the smooth top is up. Be sure each is well buttered when you’re finished with them individually so that they break apart. All of the dough (if golfball size or slightly bigger) should fit in a 8x8 pyrex dish. Allow to rise to double volume again.

Bake at 350°F for 25 minutes.

Ankarsrum instructions

I add the ingredients to the mixing bowl (no need to beat the egg), and mix.

For the kneading 8 minutes or so at 3/4 speed does it. I allow it to rise in the bowl, draped with a damp towel. To remove the dough I start the mixer to knock down the dough, then proceed as above.

Too, I use 4 cups of flour, an extra large egg, and no additional flour (using the silicone mat).

A larger dish (> 8 x 8 ) might allow for lighter rolls but won’t fit in the toaster/broiler.

I weighed at some of the way points :

4 cups AP flour = 518 gr

The entire dough mix = 932 gr

1/4 of the amount = 233gr

1/16th of the amount (one roll) = 58g
Brian. Lover of SE razors.

Posting Freak
Brian, I'm going to be making that bread in the next day or two, it looks frigging awesome, bread-wiseSmile

Southern Ohio

Nice post. My wife has been doing this for some time and sadly the loaves never last long.

I will get her some of the other recipes to try.

Philadelphia, PA
I can only look at this thread very briefly or my stomach starts to grumble. Tongue
Tu ne cede malis, sed contra audentior ito.

Central Maine
:-) Only an hour until lunch Andrew! This might help to get the predigestion juices flowing!

[Image: DSC04191_zps91d21135.jpg]
It's a Rueben I made from the pictured no knead bread. (Now I'm salivating and I'm not at all hungry. )

kwsher and Freddy like this post
Brian. Lover of SE razors.

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