No Knead Recipe Variations

Menu of No Knead Videos:
Cranberry-Pecan Seeded Sour
Parmesan-Olive Steel Cut Oats

 

Here are some of my favorite No-Knead bread recipes. Each is distinctly different from the others, touching on some of what’s possible with this simple and hugely time saving bread baking method.

(Note: If you’re brand new to no knead bread baking, I strongly encourage you to give the basic no knead recipe a try first before moving into the variations.)

In each of the videos you will see I’m using sourdough starter as the leavening agent. The use of sourdough starter is usually my preference in baking but as the written instructions indicate, you can just as easily substitute instant yeast for the starter by mixing 1/4 teaspoon of instant yeast in with the dry ingredients and leaving out the sourdough starter entirely. It’s that simple. I don’t want to see anyone deprived of the luxury of this bread experience if instant yeast is your preference for leavening.

As always, feel free to play with different flour mixes and ingredients to come up with your ultimate bread masterpiece.

Please leave your comments, questions and experiences at the bottom of the page.

December 14th, 2007 Update: Check out Kendra’s recipe for cinnamon raisin bread below. It sounds awesome. Thanks Kendra!

Also, see the post by Joanne Polayes with her variation of the cranberry pecan recipe.

July 2008 addition: Definitely check out Carolyn’s No Knead Sourdough Lavender Bread. Wow, well done Carolyn!

Jan. 27 2009 addition: For a great looking focaccia recipe, see Hedy’s post. And a little above that, Toni offers her focaccia variation which includes whole grains.

Feb. 9, 2009: See a Newfoundland favorite by Janet Kelly. Thanks Janet!

March 31, 2009: Donna Wakefield has discovered that baking with keifer for both leavening and flavor produces excellent bread. Her posts start here and continues above under her name (“Donna” and “Donna Wakefield”).

Dec. 22, 2009: Mike Owens suggests this no-knead variation: “I blend up some frozen spinach with the water and add to the flour. Then when I fold in thirds I add some grated Gruyere cheese to each fold and I do the trifold twice. It is fantastic. Hope others like it as well. Makes my lunchbox ham sandwiches more interesting.”

Aug. 1, 2010: Couldn’t resist adding this email from my new best friend ;). It includes some great no knead recipe variation tips…

“Hi Eric,

Ever since I found your website a couple years ago, we have not bought store bread (except for burger buns and pitas). Baking bread is a complete joy for me: making it is fun, seeing the results is amazing and the reactions I get from those I share it with are gratifying. Our “daily bread” is the regular sourdough (but I add 1 tsp.poppy seeds). The olive parmesan loaf is a special treat for when we have guests (my siblings love this one especially – we’re of Greek descent =)) – but I usually add a head of mashed roasted garlic to it.

I have even created my own sourdough KNM variation that I thought I’d share with you. Feel free to post it, if you’d like. It’s the basic NKM sourdough with 1/4c. chopped, pickled jalepenos and about 5 oz. shredded cheddar cheese mixed in. I was selling them to a neighbor for awhile, but then she started a weight-loss program that forbid bread (scary, huh?).

I currently take care of my elderly mother full-time, but all this bread-baking has led me to seriously consider baking as a career. I fondly imagine my own little bakery someday.

You have changed my life, Eric. Bet you don’t hear that everyday, but it’s true. Thank you.

- Elise Davies

Jan 1, 2011: Check out Bill Burk’s variation using 7 grain cereal. Makes an excellent sandwich bread.

Feb 27, 2011: Michelle Kaptor’s Cherries and Chocolate No Knead recipe looks like a winner.

Sep 9, 2011: Thanks Lisa K. for this gem - Black Russian  no knead. Based on a bagel recipe, it’s as intriguing and exotic as its name. 

Oct 17, 2011: Like Chocolate… a lot? Chocolate no knead recipe with great tips. Thanks Bart!

Mar 9, 2012: Here’s another Chocolate Cherry Sourdough version from Bradley that looks like a winner


Cranberry-Pecan Extraordinaire (makes 1 loaf)

1/2 cup (2 1/2 oz.) whole wheat flour
2 1/2 cups (13 oz.) all purpose or bread flour
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup dried sweetened cranberries
1/2 cup pecan pieces
1 1/2 cups purified water
1/4  cup sourdough starter or 1/4 tsp. instant yeast

(Read paragraph near top of page for instant yeast version of this recipe)

  • Combine the flours and salt
  • Mix the starter into the water until mostly dissolved
  • Mix the water/starter solution into the dry ingredients
  • Mix in the pecans and craisins
  • Cover bowl with plastic at let sit at room temperature for 18 hours
  • After 18 hours turn dough onto well floured surface and gently flatten enough to fold dough back onto itself a couple times to form a roundish blob. Note: This folding stage can be accomplished within the bowl, speeding up the process even further and leaving less of a cleanup.
  • Cover blob with plastic and let rest 15 minutes. During this rest period, coat a proofing basket or towel lined bowl with bran flakes.
  • Gently and quickly shape blob into an approximate ball and place in proofing basket or bowl.
  • Cover with a towel and let rise for 1-2 hours depending on room temperature.
  • As gently as possible, flip the dough into a Dutch oven or ceramic (e.g. La Cloche) baker preheated to 500F degrees and bake covered for 30 minutes. Remove cover and bake an additional 15 minutes at 450 degrees. See Great No-Knead Baking Techniques for more tips.
  • Allow bread to cool completely before slicing and eating. Warning: this most difficult step requires superhuman discipline and restraint.

You may have to adjust the baking times and temperatures to adapt to the various weights and materials of different baking containers.

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Seeded Sour (makes 1 loaf)

This recipe holds a solid spot on my “all time favorites” list. It is adapted from the George’s Seeded Sour recipe in Nancy Silverton’s Breads from the La Brea Bakery book.

1/4 cup (1 oz) rye flour
1/2 cup (2 1/2 oz) whole wheat flour
2 1/2 cups (13 oz) all purpose or bread flour
1 1/2 tsp. salt
3 1/2 tsp. quinoa
3 1/2 tsp. millet
2 Tbs. amaranth
1/2 Tbs. poppy seeds

1 1/2 cups water
1/4 cup sourdough starter or 1/4 tsp. instant yeast
2 Tbs. yogurt

Seed Topping Ingredients:

1 Tbs. amaranth
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1 1/2 Tbs poppy seeds
2 Tbs. anise seeds
1 1/2 tsp. fennel seeds

Combine all the dry ingredients (except the topping ingredients) and then add to that the combined wet ingredients.
The rest of the baking steps are the same as those listed above for the Cranberry Pecan bread.

As shown in the video, I coat the proofing basket with the combined topping ingredients so they stick to the dough during the final rise.

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Parmesan-Olive (makes 1 large loaf)

This recipe makes one amazing loaf of bread. It’s great for special occasions, and considering the price of ingredients, you may want to reserve it for special occasions. Use fresh parmesan cheese and it’s likely you will not find this loaf’s equivalent in any bakery. They would have to charge too much!

1/2 cup (2 1/2 oz.) whole wheat flour
2 2/3 cups (13 1/2 oz.) bread flour
1 tsp. salt
7 oz. grated fresh parmesan cheese
2/3 cup pitted kalamata olives (cut in half lengthwise)
1 3/4 cup purified water
1/4 cup sourdough starter or 1/4 tsp. instant yeast

Follow the same steps as those listed above for the Cranberry Pecan recipe. Combine the dry ingredients (including the cheese) then add to that the combined wet ingredients and then stir in the olives. The ingredient measurements are a little different than usual as the cheese is salty to start with and the dry mix takes more water than usual.

Here’s a video from Breadtopia visitor, Archer Yates… Nice!

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Steel Cut Oats (makes 1 loaf)

It’s amazing what the addition of a mere half cup of steel cut oats can do to enhance and vary the quality of a basic loaf of no knead bread. During the long fermentation period, the grains soften and swell to give the bread a wholesome and satisfying flavor and texture.

Simple enough to whip together in a heartbeat and interesting enough to become a regular in your no knead rotation.

3/4 cup (3 oz.) whole wheat flour
1/2 cup (3 oz.) steel cut oats
2 1/4 cups (10 oz.) bread flour
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups water
1/4 cup firm sourdough starter or 1/4 tsp. instant yeast

Pictured here: Awesome steel cut oats no knead by Breadtopia reader Marianne Preston
Marianne's Steel Cut Oats NK
Another Breadtopia reader, Allan Castine, offered this…

In my last e-mail to you, I mentioned that I had made your steel cut oats bread recipe with mostly excellent results.  My only concern, as I told you, was that the bread was a bit bland for my particular taste.

I made the recipe again yesterday with a couple of alterations:

I added an extra 1/2 teaspoon of salt and, following a suggestion from a friend of mine, I lightly toasted the oats in a dry saucepan over medium heat before adding them to the flour mixture.

The results were great. The bread was very tasty, i.e., not bland.
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{ 535 comments… read them below or add one }

April January 18, 2009 at 9:47 pm

miss bb,

I am curious about your sheets. What is a doughmakers cookie sheet?

I am also confused how retrieving a 500 degree pot out of the oven and placing it strategically over the dough, particularly if there are multiple doughs on your sheet, is easy. I dont handle the pot at all. I slide out the rack, lift the lid off the pot by the knob with a potholder or kitchen towel and dump the dough out of the brotform into the pot, slap on the lid and push in the rack. I can’t imagine how you get the hot upside down pot off the sheet for final browning. Especially since they don’t have handles. Yikes.

I am glad this method works for you.

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missbb January 18, 2009 at 4:56 pm

I tried most of the methods above for getting the dough into a hot dutch oven and still hated having to buy parchment or slinging a glubby piece of dough in scorching hot metal!
So the MissBB Solution-
1.After a first rise of 2 hours I refrigerate my dough overnight…I get better formed and prettier loves with the dough cold!
2.French Fold
3.Bread goes on doughmakers cookie sheet coated with cornmeal.
Slash and wait…sorry I wait only 40 minutes to an hour(works great)
These baking sheets are quite large.
4.While I wait I place to dutch ovens or cooking pots about the same size
in the oven at 450 degree and let them heat up as the oven reaches temperature. The containers I dutch ovens/cooking pots I use when placed flat have no interference from handles.

****When the dough is ready I place the very hot pots right on the cookie sheet and cover the dough! My bread comes out perfectly and I don’t have to deal with the slings and hot pot problems*****

It works just the same as the dutch ovens…I can cook two boules on the cookie! and if I use a roasting pan I will be able to make multiple long baguette loaves and rolls!!!!

Now that I conquered the boule issue, I see the possibility of using my roasting pan to cook some nice baguettes, and rolls!

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Georgina Kirkham January 16, 2009 at 11:22 am

Hi April
Thanks for the tip on the steel cut oats…..I have been finding the bread just comes out – not high enough —all crust—super hard crust and just not worth the work and ingreds.
Have been making regular kneaded breads with the addition of sourdough starter, instant mashed potatoes for moistness and a mix of whole wheat & bread flours.
Used my Danish wisk for the first time this morning and I LOVE it. What an energy and time saver. Helps blend everything so thoroughly. Fabulous !

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April January 16, 2009 at 10:55 am

I regularly add a scant 1/2 cup of steel cut oats to the regular NKB recipe without any alterations and it comes out fine. You might want to give it a try with a recipe that consistently works for you. These are the steel cut, not the rolled variety of oats, although I also use a rolled oat multi grain cereal as well with different results.

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JeffB. January 15, 2009 at 10:44 pm

I just used my new Danish whisk from the Breadtopia store for the first time. I can’t believe I ever used anything else. Highly recommended! I make several loaves a week. A real arm saver. Thanks Eric. I also measured and one can fit four oblong La Cloches side-by-side inside a standard oven. If only I could justify buying three more right away.

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jeff January 10, 2009 at 1:13 pm

Hedy,

I’m grinding wheat berries, not regrinding whole wheat flour. I can’t get the flour as fine as boughten flour but that’s ok, I like the texture of a llittle coarser flour and it softens nicely when it’s fermenting. It’s a little heavy but it still has a nice crumb.

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Dave the Novice January 9, 2009 at 10:04 am

I wanted to give some bread to a neighbor whose family likes sweets, so I tried a variation on the cranberry-pecan bread. I was out of craisins, but I had dried blueberries. I decided some cinnamon would go well with the blueberries, and that I’d save my pecans for the next loaf, when I’ll have the craisins.

The results were strange. The blueberries seemed to suck all the moisture from around them. I had mixed both blueberries and cinnamon in with the dough for the long fermentation period, which I let go only 12 hours, because I had begun with a full cup of starter. When I got ready to fold the dough, the blueberries were popping out of the dough. They seemed to have robbed the cinnamon around them of all moisture, so, all over the surface of the dough, there were breaks in the dough, with cinnamon and blueberries sticking out.

I attempted to poke them back into the dough, both after folding, and after shaping. I folded this dough twice, the second time 45 minutes after the first. The dough tasted salty and a bit bland, so I sprinkled granulated sugar over the surface of the stretched dough before folding, both times.

In spite of the weird behavior of the dough, the bread came out great, and they loved it.

The next time I try dried fruit, I think I’ll soak it first.

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Georgina Kirkham January 8, 2009 at 11:16 pm

Hi Eric

Have attempted the Irish Oats No Knead bread 3 times now and not having any luck with it …its turning out flat, heavy, moist inside….not too moist, just hard thick crust without a lot of “bread” inside. I think I will stick with regular No Knead breads from here on in. Thks for sharing the recipe though.

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Marcia January 7, 2009 at 10:45 am

The steel cut oats was the first No-Knead recipe I tried. Even my 8 year old daughter who won’t eat crust loved it and ate the crust! In next loaf I made, I used buckwheat flour in place of the oats. It was a moister, denser loaf. The last loaf I baked used rye and caraway seeds, similar to other submitted recipes. My husband proclaimed that his favorite. As I don’t have a ceramic or cast iron dutch oven, I used a large stoneware bowl covered with a stoneware dinner plate for baking at 450. The result is the loaves look like space ships. I’d include a photo, if I could figure out how to upload it.

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Hedy January 6, 2009 at 7:34 pm

Jeff,…are you grinding wheat berries or are you regrinding wholewheat flour that already comes in the bag (Gold Medal or King Arthur)? I’m confused. Please clarify. Also is your wholewheat bread heavy or light?
Thanx
Hedy

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tony January 6, 2009 at 1:45 pm

hi eric,can i add molassas to the no kned bread recipes???
thanks

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jeff January 6, 2009 at 12:59 pm

I noticed a distinct improvement in flavor when I ground my whole wheat flour. I just bought a cheap B&D burr coffee grinder and grind what I need when I’m making it. I also use my whole wheat flour in my sourdough starter. The bread is much nutter with a hint of rye flavor and has a pleasant after taste, something I couldn’t say for the whole wheat flours I’ve used in the past even though I kept it in the freezer. My reciepe for NKB is as follows: 3 cups of unbleached white flour, one cup of whole wheat flour, one half cup of whole wheat sourdough starter, 2 teaspoons of salt, 2 teaspoons of dill and water, I don’t measure, just keep adding till I get the right texture. Put in frig and after 3 to 5 days put in container to rise and bake at 350 for about an hour, my kids don’t like the crust when done at 450. Flavor is the bomb, very nutty and many at work say it taste like rye with the dill seed added to it.

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Jeff B. January 5, 2009 at 2:54 pm

Eric,

I got the Oblong La Cloche for Christmas, and had a batch of cinnamon raisin NK proofing. It came out great. I need to expand the recipe’s based on Joe’s tips to better fill the La Cloche, but so far, a great addition to the baking tools! I agree a lot more cinnamon sugar can be added during the tri-fold of the loaf. And I was thinking of trying a rolling instead of a tri fold to get that characteristic swirl.

The only trouble with all of this bread baking is that I have to up my running to keep up with all of the yummy calories!

Happy New Year!

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Breadtopia January 3, 2009 at 7:30 pm

My personal feeling is that it’s not that formulaic. There’s a wide range of options you could go with. I would just guess at an amount of starter to start with and see what happens. You may also find that some recipes don’t convert well to sourdough leavening.

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Gia January 3, 2009 at 7:25 pm

Thanks! If I was trying to use starter in other recipes would I use the same conversion, whatever the tsp amount use that in cups like above?

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Breadtopia January 3, 2009 at 6:47 pm

Hi Gia,

In all the above videos, I just use 1/4 cup of starter in place of the yeast. 18 hours is plenty of time to let it proof. I usually don’t even go that long.

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Gia January 3, 2009 at 6:41 pm

I am interested in just using my starter in recipes. These no knead recipes are great!! If a recipe calls for dry/instant yeast how much starter do I use in its place? So then if I us starter instead I need to let it rise extra time (like nk sourdough) right?

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Dave the Novice December 30, 2008 at 4:54 pm

Kitchen Kate:

A 5-qt. Dutch oven is plenty big. I made a sourdough KNB this week in a 3-Qt Lodge enameled Dutch oven, and it worked perfectly. No changes needed.

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Elise Davies December 24, 2008 at 5:16 pm

Hi Eric,

Boy, do I love your no-knead sourdough recipes! Today, I baked the parmesan- olive loaf. It came out almost like a batter out of the bowl after proofing, but I went ahead and baked it anyway. It is, without question, the best bread I’ve ever eaten. We’re talking fine bakery quality here. (Did I mention I added an entire head of roasted garlic to the mix?). So, next time I just have to proof for a shorter time. But the real beauty in these recipes is how hard they are to screw up! I’ve veered off course with lots of the directions (I use a pizza stone and a heavy overturned stainless steel soup pot for baking, change the amounts of flour types, added sunflower and sesame seeds) when making your regular no-knead sourdough and they always come out perfect! It’s really amazing. Thank you. I’m ready to go pro!

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kitchen kate December 24, 2008 at 2:34 pm

2 no-knead questions:
I have a 5 qt enameled cast iron pot … smalller than the 6.5 qt called for in the recipes. Do I need to alter anything because of the size?
Someone on this site referred to a no-knead recipe in the Dec/08 Gourmet magazine. The January issues came out 2 days ago!! I couldn’t find anyone with a December copy. Could someone post the recipe here – please. I checked the Epicurious website, but its not there.

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Jeff B. December 19, 2008 at 11:12 pm

Tip regarding my Camp Pan technique above. I kept searching for a cheaper forming device for the boule style loaves that I bake using the No Knead Dutch Oven method. I was using the 8″ Open Country camp pan, but today I found something cheaper and therefore better for making many loaves at once. I was at the Dollar Tree chain of dollar stores, and I found a cheap 8″ fry pan. It only took about 15 seconds with a phillips screwdriver to take off the handle. Perfect for a No Knead form for proofing and then baking. Needless to say, the pan is flimsy, but perfect as a bread loaf form, and of course, only $1. I found I can fit three La Cloche or other Dutch Oven type pots in my oven at once, and then use three of these $1 8″ fry pan forms to make three great boules at once.

I like to bake up a bunch of loaves at once because its only a little more effort for each extra loaf, and I freeze the loaves that I will eat within a week or two so that I only need to bake once every 10 days or so.

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Breadtopia November 22, 2008 at 12:21 pm

I think instant yeast may be faster acting than other commercial yeasts and is certainly way faster than sourdough starter, so it would be interesting to see some side by side comparisons.

Good to know you were fine with a 24 hr rise using active dry. Yet another testament to the flexibility and forgiving nature of these no knead recipes.

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Dave the Novice November 22, 2008 at 10:53 am

Howie,

I hope you went ahead and tried it. I’m all caught up in using sourdough these days, but when I was still always using active dry yeast, I always started with yeast right out of the fridge and cold water, and I usually let the first rise go 24 hours. I never had a failure doing that, and the flavor was better. My kitchen ranges form 72 to 74 degrees. At 63 degrees, I’ll bet yours works great.

Admittedly, I have never tried instant yeast, but I don’t think that will matter.

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Breadtopia November 22, 2008 at 10:03 am

Hi Howie. Good to hear from you.

At 63 it might work. Normally I’d be concerned about the yeast petering out by then, but 63 is pretty dang cool. I guess you’re trying to get the recipe to conform to your schedule? If that’s the case you might want to use cold water when mixing it all up. The cold water won’t hurt the yeast at all, but just slow it down for a while, helping you achieve your 24 hr objective.

If you do try this, please let us know how it goes.

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Howie Cohen November 22, 2008 at 8:02 am

Hi Eric,
Question for you… Is there any downside in extending the 18 hour proofing time to say.. 24 hours… in a cool 63 degree room? I really goofed and miscalculated the time I had to get this whole thing going. I rather not wake up at 2 in the morning.

Also any downside to using cold water to mix the starter in? I typically warm it slightly in the microwave and then use it. A friend asked this question and I suggested using luke warm (105) all the time. I think the yeast will be happier.

LOVE the seeded sour. A buddy fell in love with the crust.

Howie Cohen
Utica, NY

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Dave the Novice November 21, 2008 at 6:48 pm

Jeff,

I haven’t noticed that shaping makes a better crust, necessarily, but, it does make a better-looking loaf. If I’m going to show it off, I shape it and slash it, too.

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JeffB. November 21, 2008 at 5:24 pm

Dave. I think you will find that you will get an even better crust if you stretch the dough under and shape the loaf, even if you use the foil. Almost all of the real pro bakers I have read, talk about shaping the boule and how important that is to the final product. I guess it depends on how one wants the crust to look. But anyway, yeah, there is definitely more than one way to skin a cat.

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Dave the Novice November 21, 2008 at 4:47 pm

Jeff,

I do a very similar thing, except I use Reynolds Release aluminum foil. I have a stainless steel bowl which is the perfect size for the final rise. I line it with foil, sprinkle with sesame seeds, place the boule on it, and sprinkle the top with more seeds. The KNB dough is usually wet enough that the seeds stick, because I usually fold directly in the fermentation bowl, with a plastic rounded dough scraper or a silicone spatula. No flour, and no handling. The foil is easier to handle than parchment when lifting the dough into the hot dutch oven, and out at the end. I bake at 450, then take the bread completely out and brown it directly on the oven rack for 8-9 minutes.

Like your method, no cleaning the proofing bowl or the Dutch oven. I can use a piece of foil 8 or 9 times, on average. Not as satisfying as your method from an engineering perspective, but then, I don’t have to disassemble a camping skillet, either.

Isn’t it fun to mess around with these methods?

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JeffB. November 21, 2008 at 2:46 pm

Good news!

I have a new technique for Boule loafs that I think all will enjoy. And in the spirit of NK bread, it is easy and solves many problems at once. Earlier in the comment threads, I was looking for a better way to get boule shaped rounded loafs. The flop in to the hot dutch oven always seemed like a mistake to me given the way that a real mass production bread line might be run with a conveyor belt in to a commercial oven, etc. (Did I mention I am an engineer and the part of bread-making I really love is of course, The Process and Repeatability.)

Anyway, here is the trick. I call it the NKNF (No Knead No Flop) method.

After you ferment your dough, then you turn it out on to the floured surface, flatten, tri-fold with bench knife, etc. Then get enough flour on your hands and the dough so you can handle it and shape it. Now, form it in to a nice ball by rotating and turning the sides under repeatedly until you have stretched the dough without breaking the surface. So you just did all that nice shaping. It’s a shame to lose that by turning it upside down in the proofing bowl. So I proof right side up! And not on parchment, because again, that doesn’t retain form, and it means buying and wasting more paper often.

My solution is an aluminum 8″ camping frying pan. I had one lying around as I like to backpack and camp. I removed the handle by putting one side of it in a vice and coaxing the other side out with pliers, and then moving the pan back and forth to get the first side out of the handle while the handle remains in the vice. The pan I use is this one: Open Country 8″ Fry Pan Only about $15. And it is non-stick teflon coated!!!! You might be able to find another 8″ pan at REI, etc. Some camp pans come with easily detachable handles for nesting the pans. Make sure you get a teflon coated one. One could also buy a regular cheap 8″ fry pan and simply cut the handle off with a hack saw, or drill out the rivets and remove the handle. 8″ is key as it is the perfect size for the recipe amounts listed here in this thread.

I sprinkle a little cornmeal in the bottom of the pan. No oil needed. Then, place the rounded loaf in the pan. After I place the nicely rounded loaf in the teflon coated pan, I then place it in a large glass bowl and cover with plastic bag for the second rise/ proof. The teflon coated pan provides the perfect rounded bottom shape, is non-stick and keeps your wonderful hand shaping intact. For Seeded Sour, you can also then spritz the formed loaf in the pan with water, and then sprinkle the seeded mixture on to the shaped dough and gently pat it in for good coverage and seed retention while rising.

Without the handle the 8″ fry pan then fits perfectly in to a typical Dutch oven or round La Cloche. Since it is aluminum, heat is transferred very quickly and there is no issue with placing it right in to the hot dutch oven as the usual NK process demands. You might need to experiment with temps to prevent overcooking. I found that 500 was way too hot and that 440 works best in my oven for 30 minutes, and then the 15 with the lid off.

No flop, no loss of shape or oven spring, and the loaf comes right out when baking is done. Easy peasy. Also, it is very easy to handle with baking mits, and to place down in to the hot Dutch oven, unlike a flop of a proofing basket, and / or parchment which usually means handling with bare hands that can be burned. This way, there is no need to remove the oven mits from the time you open the preheated oven door, to the time you close the door. Safe! Have you ever grabbed at the lid to put it back on the dutch oven while forgetting to first put the mit back on your hand? Yeah, not good. I did it too.

Another bonus is no need to clean the proofing basket or dutch oven. And cleaning out the teflon pan after baking is a snap. Less steps = better process = consistency.

The end result is a beautifully rounded boule that rises up enough to make a bread bowl and much more toaster-friendly slices. I will send some pics soon.

Try it out, you will love it. Eric, you might even want to carry this pan or similar at Breadtopia’s store. It really makes a nice bread forming tool. I couldn’t find a suitable pan without a handle, but I am sure someone out there has made one that is teflon coated and would work, making it the perfect addition to the breadmaker’s toolbox.

PS – I also switched to all teflon coated 9×5 pans for the ANK sandwich loaf baking. I get really consistent results, a great second rise, and easy removal of the loaf after baking. Safeway sells a great model for about $4 each.

Jeff's Bread

Jeff's Bread

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LouG November 18, 2008 at 4:51 pm

Well this all sounds very complicated! I have been making 2-3 no-knead loaves a week over the last few weeks and every one has turned out great with little effort (just time!). I don’t use a starter (but believe the time fermenting adds flavour) although may try this sometime. I use either a pyrex casserole dish or normal loaf pans heated in the oven and covered in tin foil for a “normal” shaped loaf. Really works great – making white bread this way produces a lovely chewy ciabatta type loaf that is very popular in my house. I also tend to split the quantity and make 2 smaller loaves always – makes it easier to eat one / freeze one. Wholemeal bread is divine using this method – giving a lovely aerated texture I’ve never been able to achieve with kneaded varieties.

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marc lowen November 18, 2008 at 9:49 am

Thanks Dave…I think I’m much more of a novice but have enjoyed my new hoby

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Dave the Novice November 18, 2008 at 8:58 am

Marc,

I like that question. My answer is, I don’t: I cheat. I figure my starter always needs to be fed before using, so I take it out of the fridge, dump it into a bowl, add 1 cup of flour and 3/4 cup of water, mix well, cover lightly , and let it work for several hours. When I think it’s ready to use, or I’m ready, I stir it down to break the bubbles, and then remove the quantity of starter I began with. That way, I know that the starter in the bowl contains 1 cup of flour and 3/4 cup of water, so those are the quantities I subtract from my recipe.

This way, I’m not trying to guess how much flour and how much water is in a cup of starter. The only starter I measure is what I’m putting back in the refrigerator. In my case, that’s always 1 cup, but I could just as easily use another quantity, as long as I’m consistent.

When I finally get a scale, I may do things differently.

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marc lowen November 18, 2008 at 6:58 am

How do you calculate the addition of 1 cup starter into a receipe that normally contains 4cups of flower

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Susan Daku November 17, 2008 at 11:16 am

Thank you Eric for your quick reply. I guess I had a momentary “bread bloop” of the brain. Your information makes perfect sense! I remember trying a recipe of this nature {Yeasted bread} with RED RIVER CEREAL and simply threw in the grains dry. They were a bit crunchy to the tooth yet still edible.

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Breadtopia November 17, 2008 at 5:18 am

Hi Susan. As for soaking the grains, I thing you would find that simply mixing them into the no knead dough at the beginning would work well. I say this because that’s what the steel cut oats recipe calls for and there are few things harder (or that would take longer to cook) than steel cut oats. And yet the steel cut oat recipe calls for a 1/2 cup of them (quite a lot) and they soften up very well over the course of the recipe preparation.

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Susan Daku November 16, 2008 at 10:11 pm

Hi Eric {or whoever has any experience with hard cereal grains} I am interested in incorporating BOB’S RED MILL 10 GRAIN CEREAL into my SDNK or NK yeasted bread. Which of the two would be the best method: 1) Cook it like a cereal as directed on the package or 2) Just soak it as a seed ball? If so to any of these methods how much should be used for the regular NKB? The grains are about a medium grind. Also I picked up a Romertopf clay baker for $2 at a garage sale that looks fairly new, so I should probably soak 20-30 mins. It is stamped with 111 on the bottom and holds 12cups of water. Is this too large a pot or can I do 1 1/2X the formulae? I’ve seen different posts on Breadtopia on the use of Romertopf unglazed bakers and they sound very successful-cold oven and hot oven tecnique. Just need a little more info on these bakers as mine didn’t come with a manual!! I sure would appreciate some input soon from an experienced baker as I have my SD starter building now. Thank you for your feedback, Susan

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Marge November 16, 2008 at 8:26 pm

I have been baking all my breads in my Pampered Chef stoneware. I use the loaf pan and cover with a loaf pan. I’ve also used the deep dish baker with lid to make a round loaf. The No Knead Harvest bread (King Arthur’s website) was where I got started with this way of baking bread, and I love it.
That bread was put in the pan in a cold oven and baked at 450º for 45 min., take the cover off and bake for about 5 min. more. I have been doing this wiith all the no knead breads with great success. After the 1st rise, (anywhere from 8 to 12 hrs. for me.) put the dough in the pan you are going to bake it in and let it rise for about 2 hours. It eliminates the proofing bowl.

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Liz Wroth November 16, 2008 at 5:38 pm

Have found greatest success with these wettish doughs by combining the following excellent suggestions from these posts: 1) a rise after shaping in a bowl lined with non-stick aluminum foil or parchment paper; 2) placing an open, bottomless springform pan into the bottom of my aluminum dutch oven for preheating; and 3) lifting dough on its aluminum foil or parchment sling into the preheated springform pan (which supports the wet dough during baking); 4) replace cover on dutch oven and bake as per given recipe– Many, many thanks to all the posters here who’ve provided these tweaks and suggestions

Liz

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Breadtopia November 9, 2008 at 3:13 pm

That’s great, Marilyn. Glad it’s working out so well!

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Marilyn November 7, 2008 at 9:30 pm

Hey Eric…I’m haunting you again….lol…

Your Steel Cut Oats recipe is one of my favourites!!!…although I’ve only tried 3 different recipes so far :-) It is healthy, tasty and easy to make!

I also use the parchment paper trick…..what an excellent idea!

I finished baking my latest no-knead Steel Cut Oats loaf yesterday at 10:30am. As I usually make 2 loaves at a time, I had also made the no-knead Rye bread(nice results too!). So, I put my Steel Cut Oats loaf away in a cloth bread bag and forgot about it until this evening at 9pm. I thought it would be all dried out. Well let me tell you, it was much easier to slice thin slices after over 24 hrs than it is on the same day that it is baked. I couldn’t beleive it!

As we are only 2 adults and 2 under 4 in our home, we don’t go through much bread. So, I like to make this loaf, slice it and then freeze the slices in a ziploc bag. I toast slices individually as we need them. One loaf usually lasts us about 1 week. This recipe is healthy, has great fiber content and a fantastic flavour…even for kids. I had been waiting for Eric’s “Best Whole Wheat Bread ” recipe for sometime now….hint…hint….but find that this recipe is even better and likely easier (because it is no-knead) than any other whole wheat recipe. Also, it is likley healthier with a higher fiber content due to the oatmeal.

As I was saying, with this Steel Cut Oats recipe, after freezing the slices, I usually toast slices for my kids’ breakfasts and snacks. However, my peeve was that the crust was a bit too thick and hard for their young teeth. Now by accident, I was able to find out that if you wait 24 hrs to slcie the bread, the bread is so much easier to slice thinly. Therefore, thinner slices make for less crust and an easier to chew bread for my picky 4 yr old! I am sooooo happy!

Thanks Eric, for these great recipes that help me feel great about baking healthy bread for my family without the pains of baking bread for my family.

Marilyn,
Toronto, Canada

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Carolyn November 6, 2008 at 8:11 pm

Hi Lynne,
The 1/6 cup came from cutting the original recipe in half. I just eyeball half of a 1/3 cup measure.

Carolyn

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Lynne November 6, 2008 at 5:22 pm

Hi
I have a questain about Carolyn’s No Knead Sourdough Lavender Bread
It says to use 1/6 cup of oil–what is 1/6 cup?
Are there measuring cups in the stores that have that measurement or what?
how do I measure it?

Thank you so much
Lynne

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Bread Doofus November 6, 2008 at 3:01 pm

Or, Jeff B., you could try the parchment paper trick….have you tried that? Go here to read about it if you haven’t already:

http://www.breadtopia.com/2008/09/16/its-bread-baking-season/

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Dave the Novice November 6, 2008 at 2:13 pm

My latest no-knead sourdough is my favorite so far:

1 cup whole wheat starter
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 1/2 cups bread flour
1 Tbl kosher salt
1 1/4 cup water (approx)

I started by making a sponge with the starter and the cup of whole wheat flour, and about 1/2 cup of the water. I just mixed until I had a pancake-batter consistency, rather than measuring carefully. This was covered with plastic wrap and set aside for about 6 hours, until nice and bubbly and about doubled in volume. I then stirred it well to break up the bubbles, and took out a cup of the sponge to save as my starter for next time.

I then added the bread flour and salt, and mixed, adding about 3/4 cup of water to get the wet dough consistency I am used to for no-knead bread. I covered the bowl with plastic again, and let it ferment at roomtemperature for 13 hours.

At this point the dough had risen to the top of the bowl. I turned it out onto a floured board, and folded it as in the original recipe, then covered it with a towel and let it rest for 15 minutes. I lined a large bowl with Reynolds release foil, dusted it with sesame seeds, then formed the dough into a tight boule and placed it on the foil. I dusted the top with more sesame seeds, coveered the bowl with the towel, and let it rise for about 4 hours.

I slashed the top, and baked it in a preheated cast-iron Dutch oven, in a 450-degree oven for 30 minutes. I then removed the bread from the Dutch oven, took it off the foil, and finished browning it directly on the oven rack for 9 minutes.

We felt the whole wheat flavor was better developed in this loaf than when I used a white starter and whole-wheat flour. We put both butter and olive oil on the table, but no one used either. A friend eating with us said he really liked the subtle tang of the sourdough, which is what I was aiming for with a full cup of starter and just 13 hours of fermentation. I also find sourdough reduces the amount of salt I need, compared to baking with commercial yeast, but that may just be a personal preference.

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Dave the Novice November 6, 2008 at 1:46 pm

Eileen,

Steel cut oats are just oats that have been cut rather than steamed and rolled. the way American oatmeal is normally processed. Spelt is an ancient wheat variety. You can buy the whole grains, or flour ground from spelt.

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Eileen McKown November 6, 2008 at 10:44 am

This NKB method is all new to me. Can you tell me what steel cut oats are and what is spelt? Thank you – I’m anxious to get started!
Eileen

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Jeff B. October 23, 2008 at 1:54 am

My father-in-law suggested the spring form idea too. I also thought of putting a non-stick pan in the bottom of the dutch oven as it warms. But I think the best would be a dutch oven or oven safe pot that had a sort of rounded bottom with about an 8″ diameter. I’ll see if I can find a small spring form.

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Breadtopia October 22, 2008 at 3:48 pm

Hi Jeff,

One fellow I know of, Ed Pillitteri, removes the bottom from a springform pan and uses just the ring placed on the base of the round la cloche to shore up the edges of the wet dough and force more of a rise. I suppose you could do the same inside a Dutch oven.

I have a 4 qt Dutch oven that seems about the right size to keep the dough from spreading out a lot.

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Jeff B. October 20, 2008 at 12:46 am

Eric,

I baked a loaf of the Seeded Sour and it was just fantastic and got rave reviews at my mother-in-laws 75th B-Day party. Very few store bought loaves I have ever had were as good or better than the Seeded Sour. Thanks to you and Nancy Silverton.

I was also wondering, does anyone have any ideas for better forming of round loaves in the dutch oven? I have seen Joe Valencic’s comments for how to fill out an oblong La Cloche when baking oblong loaves, but was wondering if anyone as found a form like device or can recommend a correctly sized dutch oven for getting a taller rounder loaf.

Don’t get me wrong, the bread I’ve been turning out is perfect in taste, crumb, etc., it’s just that I don’t find that the ANK or NK doughs dumped from the second rise in to a typical dutch oven or round La Cloche will hold their shape. Ideally there would be a La Cloche that would be sort of a cross between the rounded bottom bread pan like Oblong La Cloche and the flat bottomed dutch oven like Round La Cloche?

Any ideas anyone?

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Marge October 18, 2008 at 7:13 pm

I have made 4 loaves of this absolutely delicious bread. I use my Pampered Chef Baker. I used the cold oven method for the last loaf, and it turned out wonderful. I prefer this way to the heated baker. I baked it at 475 for 45 min., took the cover off and baked another 10 min.
The first no-knead bread I made (and make quite often) was the No Knead Harvest bread from the King Arthur’s sight, and that recipe also starts with a cold oven.

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