No knead bread seems to be the current trend in bread baking. If you’re new to bread baking, you might wonder what these no knead recipes are and how they work.
I had been baking bread with my grandmother since I was little and had never done a no knead recipe in my life. But I had also never baked a successful loaf of bread on my own. After a Christmas cinnamon swirl loaf disaster, I had all but given up on becoming a bread baker.
While I was living in Salt Lake City, I lived within walking distance of a Barnes and Noble. I started walking to the store often to browse. I guess I had not given up on bread quite yet, because I would always end up in a chair with a stack of bread books next to me trying to find something that looked easy. So many of the books I looked at talked about starters and breads that took days to prepare. I just wanted something quick. It never seemed that hard when I was baking in my grandmother’s kitchen.
Finally, after a few weeks of digging, I came upon a method that was different than the rest. Today we know it as the “No Knead” method, and the book I found was Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day: The Discovery That Revolutionizes Home Baking. This book got me back into the kitchen and, after just one try, I had success. The more I baked, the better the loafs turned out. It was simple, it worked and I was hooked!
How does the No Knead Method work?
No knead bread is a way of baking that uses very long rising times to substitute for kneading. Kneading is generally used in bread to help form the gluten strands. Gluten in a protein that helps give bread its chewy and airy texture. The no knead method works because the dough is so wet. The gluten molecules can move around freely in a wet dough allowing them to line up. The lined up molecules are usually created with kneading. Yes it’s science; but trust me it works!
Perfect For Beginners
So why do I share no knead recipes? They are easy and hard to mess up, which makes them great for beginners. I cut my teeth with the no knead method and it’s a great way to learn about working with bread and gain some confidence Additionally, you don’t need any fancy equipment, just a big bowl or a Tupperware and some flour, yeast and salt. If you are looking for a place to start, I suggest that you take a look at my no knead section.
Every recipe follows the same pattern. Mix the ingredients in a Tupperware container, let it rise on the counter for about 2 hours and it is ready for storage. Then you can either shape, rest and bake the dough, or pop the Tupperware into the fridge for another day. Each of the breads in the no knead section can be made ahead of time and stored for later. Just pull out the amount you need for that day, shape it and bake it!
No Knead Quick Tips
–Make the bread in a Tupperware container. Storing it in the fridge easily, and you only dirty one dish
–Plan to make the dough with a little time to spare. Most whole grain recipes call for a 2 hour rise on the counter
–For easy shaping refrigerate the dough, because no knead dough is sticky as heck. After the 2 hour rise, stick the dough in the fridge for a few hours or over night before shaping. The dough will be less sticky and easier to shape. I suggest most new bakers make the dough a day before they want to bake it.
–The dough will last in the fridge for about 2 weeks. However, if you have extra, you can freeze it. Freeze in 1 pound balls at most. Then just defrost the dough the night before and shape as usual.
Thank you for reading today! I hope you enjoyed this article. If you know someone who could benefit from step by step videos on baking with whole grains and information about creating healthy breads, please share this with them today!