Friday, January 30, 2009

no knead artisan bread

Look at this picture of my daughter.She has always liked to dress up.

And not much has really changed now that she's 13.

Our Stake hosted a Daddy/Daughter Dinner/Dance/Date (duh -- that's a lot of d's) last night. Some of the sweet girls/women in our ward offered the Young Women the use of their old prom dresses. The Oldest Carrotstick was ready and willing to take them up on the offer. She borrowed this swishy sparkly sequiny dress of wonderment last night, so she could dress up like Cinderella going to the ball. She was pretty. And, even more importantly, she felt pretty. And witty. And bright. And a little giggly.

She and her dad had fun together. I think. But the best part of the whole night was when a high school aged girl (that she didn't know) came up to her and asked her if that was the dress she wore to prom.

"Ummm, well. No. I'm only 13." She admitted. But she loved every minute of it. She came home and told me. And then she told 153 of her closest friends.

One friend responded, "Well, it's cool when someone thinks you look like you're 17 when you're only 13. It's not so cool when you are 20 and someone thinks you look like you're 30."


20 versus 30?

Looking 30 is an insult?

Well, look here, Mr. Know-It-All-Smarty-Pants-Kid-On-My-Naughty-List. 30 is NO insult. 40 isn't either.

Some things get better with age.

Like this super good, easy, impressive looking bread.

You mix up the ingredients, and then you let it sit. For like 24 hours. And it only gets better the longer it sits.

Just like me.

If you cook it too soon it would have no flavor and it would be flat and hard like a rock. So there.

Teenagers Knead to Get Real Like This No Knead Bread

3 cups all-purpose or bread flour, more for dusting
¼ teaspoon instant yeast
1¼ teaspoons salt
Cornmeal or wheat bran as needed.

1. In a large bowl combine flour, yeast and salt. Add 1 5/8 cups water, and stir until blended; dough will be shaggy and sticky. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let dough rest at least 12 hours, preferably about 18, at warm room temperature, about 70 degrees.
2. Dough is ready when its surface is dotted with bubbles. Lightly flour a work surface and place dough on it; sprinkle it with a little more flour and fold it over on itself once or twice. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rest about 15 minutes.
3. Using just enough flour to keep dough from sticking to work surface or to your fingers, gently and quickly shape dough into a ball. Generously coat a cotton towel (not terry cloth) with flour, wheat bran or cornmeal; put dough seam side down on towel and dust with more flour, bran or cornmeal. Cover with another cotton towel and let rise for about 2 hours. When it is ready, dough will be more than double in size and will not readily spring back when poked with a finger.
4. At least a half-hour before dough is ready, heat oven to 450 degrees. Put a 6- to 8-quart heavy covered pot (cast iron, enamel, Pyrex or ceramic) in oven as it heats. When dough is ready, carefully remove pot from oven. Slide your hand under towel and turn dough over into pot, seam side up; it may look like a mess, but that is O.K. Shake pan once or twice if dough is unevenly distributed; it will straighten out as it bakes. Cover with lid and bake 30 minutes, then remove lid and bake another 15 to 30 minutes, until loaf is beautifully browned. Cool on a rack.
Yield: One 1½-pound loaf

Give it a try. You'll only be out some time, and you'll end up with a beautiful, chewy, crusty, super good-looking loaf that only improves with time. Again, just. like. me. Better. With. Age. But not crusty.

Kate, here's a link to the original recipe.

And here's an article for your reading enjoyment.

I think the pan is kind of important 'cause it holds the heat and that makes the nice crust happen. According to my cooking Bible, Cooks Illustrated, it said you can get a decent cast iron covered pan for about $40 at Wallie's. Mine's green. Liz got a cuter looking (red) one from Target for a little more money. Maybe you could start a fund. I'll donate.

bread picture by Peggasus


Kate said...

interesting and simple. sounds good, would look good too if you had posted a picture. What if I don't have any of those pots, what would i use? would it turn out the same?

You can mail me some if you like?!

Kellye said...

She is so beautiful.

Allyson said...

She looks loverly! Thank you once again for anther wunderbar recipe!

Amber said...

She does look gorgeous. She is beautiful inside and out. What a fun memory for girls with their dads! I know my girls always enjoy it.

Kellie said...

The oldest Carrotstick is so gorgeous, she could definitely pass for Cinderella.

Head Nurse or Patient- you be the judge said...

It is so not fair that our children grow up like that. In a blink she will be dating FER Reals!

enjoy all the best parts of the Teenage years. Before you know it- she WILL be twenty.

Erica said...

If you liked the Jim Lahey bread method from the NYTimes, then you should look at the book kneadlessly simple by Nancy Baggett. She uses the same type of method. Her website has a recipe archive that allows you to try some of her recipes. She also has a blog you can follow. You can find her blog through the website also. Happy Baking!