I know a lot of people are afraid of making bread. Or, they think all the kneading and rising takes too much effort. When you compare the price of commercially made bread ($3.00) vs homemade ($1.25) you will see quite a difference in price. Then multiply that saving by how many loaves you use in a month it adds up. Every cent matters!
Each time I make bread I feel my Dad around me. I use the old antique mixing bowl that he always used. I can almost feel the HUG! Dad made amazing bread!
I’m going to show you a simple, no knead bread that gives you a good product every time. Well, depending on the quality of your ingredients.
Quality Ingredients are KEY!
If you’ve had that foil packet of yeast hanging around in your cupboard for so long that you don’t remember buying, it TURF IT! I can’t stress enough that for success you need decent yeast. Look at your Best Before Date. It doesn’t need to be expensive or fancy it just needs to be fresh. And please, don’t skip proofing your yeast. I’d rather waste 33 cents worth of yeast to save a batch a bread then throw it all away. Wouldn’t you?
Another important ingredient to think about is your water. YUP… that’s right. We take it for granted. I moved from a rural area to a city. Never considered how chlorinated and fluoridated water could be. It took me some time to realize that my flopping bread was due to those chemicals killing my precious yeast. If you aren’t sure about your water leave it out for 24 hours to help evaporate some of those contaminates. I always have two, 2L jugs of water in my fridge so it’s not a problem for me but this could mean a little planning for those that don’t.
The Recipe for 1 loaf:
- 2 cups water
- 2 tsp sugar
- 2 tsp yeast
- 1lb 2oz flour
- 2 tsp salt
- about 1T of soft butter (to oil your pans)
See? Nothing exotic or expensive, just simple ingredients.
Always Weigh Your Flour.
I hope you noticed that I listed the flour by weight. It’s important to note that weighing your flour gives you a much better product. Flour tends to settle and compact somewhat during shipping and handling so it’s hard to say what volume of flour is in a cup. AND once you feel comfortable with this recipe you can play around with different flours as long as you have the correct weight. I like to grind Roger’s Porridge blend in my food processor to create a flour. It’s tasty and I know it’s healthier than white flour.
- large bowl
- medium size bowl
- kitchen scale
- measuring spoon (just the teaspoon)
- wooden spoon or sturdy spatula
- plastic wrap
- loaf pan, glass or metal, or oven proof bowl,
- Plug in your kettle. Trust me you’ll see why. In the medium bowl place 1.5 cups water and 2 tsp sugar. Stir it to dissolve the sugar. Add half a cup of boiling water. The reason you don’t want to skip this step is that yeast thrives in lukewarm water. Meaning it can’t be too hot or too cold or you will kill the yeast. Sprinkle 2 tsp yeast on top and set aside for about 10 minutes. This is proofing your yeast. When it’s ready the yeast will be bubbly.
- Weigh your flour and place it in the large bowl. (I made two loaves) Add the salt and whisk it a bit to fluff it up.
- Once proofed add the water and yeast mixture to the flour and stir, beat, move around until it is well mixed. You will notice it’s quite sticky. Trust me… continue on. This is different from any other way I’ve made bread before.
- Cover with plastic wrap and set in a warm, draft free space. I like to use the oven. Set your oven to the highest heat for about one minute and then turn it off. Put your bowl in the oven. Perfect! Let rise for 1 hour or until doubled.
- Once you have achieved the first rise you want to release some of that air. Using your wooden spoon pull the dough from the edges of the bowl and fold it in on itself. Go all the way around the bowl until you have deflated a good portion of the air pockets.
- Butter your loaf pan or whatever vessel you choose and put the dough in. In the picture above please note…. this is too full. LOL! I wasn’t paying attention but it’s a good lesson that shows you it really doesn’t have to be perfect. As you can see I made two loaves. Because the dough is sticky it’s tricky to split the batch so just do your best. Sometimes I add a little more flour to the mix so that the second rising won’t spill over the edge of the pan.
- Preheat the oven to 425 degree F. and place the bread somewhere close by. Let rise for about 30 minutes.
- Once it has risen place it in the oven for 15 minutes.
- At the 15 minute mark turn the heat down to 375 degree F. and continue cooking for 17 minutes.
As you can see it’s not perfect. LOL!! Not sure what happened…. I was probably paying too much attention to my camera and not enough to the bread. Oh well. The Run-over was yummy when I cut it off and buttered it. Nice and crispy! Sometimes it comes out as planned and sometimes it doesn’t. Either way it’s still yummy!
Let the bread completely cool before bagging it. I usually make two loaves. I leave one bagged loaf out on the counter and put the other one in the freezer. Easy as can be. I hope you enjoy making this bread.