They say a man can’t live by bread alone … but this woman sure could! When I was in junior high, I would come home after school and my sister and I would devour an entire loaf of white Wonder bread together. We’d take the crust off each slice, and then wad the white part into a dense ball with our hands before eating it. So now you know one of my weird quirks (some day I’ll tell you how I used to eat M&Ms). Now as an adult, I prefer breads with more grain and texture than the light and fluffy, not-so-good-for-you Wonder bread. So when I came across this no knead peasant bread recipe at Alexandra Cooks, I just had to test it out in my kitchen. (Recipe at end of post.)
I love mouth-watering yeast breads fresh out of the oven, and when I found out this particular bread required no kneading … well that was just the icing on the cake! Or should I say, the butter on the bread?
Does anything smell as wonderful as fresh baked bread? I don’t think so!
After mixing the dough and letting it rise, you divide it into common bowls for baking.
The flavor and texture is so comforting. Perfect for serving with soup or salad.
No Knead Peasant Bread is so much better than the wadded-into-a-ball Wonder bread I ate as a kid!
Although it’s called No Knead Peasant Bread, I think it’s good enough to serve your finest guests!
No Knead Peasant Bread
4 cups all-purpose flour (not bleached flour)
2 teaspoons kosher salt
2 cups lukewarm water
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
Dissolve sugar in the water in a small bowl. Sprinkle yeast over top (no need to stir) and let it stand for about 15 minutes or until mixture starts to bubble up. Meanwhile, whisk together flour and salt in a large bowl. After the yeast mixture becomes foamy, stir it up and add to the flour mixture. Stir until the flour is absorbed into the liquid.
Cover bowl with a tea towel and set aside in a warm spot to rise for at 1.5 hours.
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease two 1 or 1.5 quart oven-safe bowls with about a tablespoon of butter each. Or, you can do like I did and divide some of the dough evenly between one 1.5 quart bowl and several greased ramekins. Punch down your dough, and then scrape it from the sides of the bowl, which takes a little finessing. Take two forks and divide the dough into two equal portions. The dough will be wet, not dry like dough that you knead. Scoop up each half and place into your prepared bowls. Again, this takes a little finessing since the dough is wet and sticky. Let the dough rise again in a warm spot for about 30 minutes.
Bake for 15 minutes at 425 degrees, then reduce heat to 375 degrees and bake for about 15 minutes more. Remove from oven and turn loaves onto cooling racks. Let cool for approximately 10 minutes before cutting. Enjoy!