I have a new favourite: No-Knead bread.

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No-Knead bread was first published by Jim Lahey in the New York Times about ten years ago. Kneading is typically the step in bread-making that helps to develop the gluten, which then makes the bread yummy, airy and chewy.

As it turns out, you replace this physically demanding activity by, wait for it, nothing at all; other than time. For a no-knead bread, you mix all the ingredients and wait. And instead of the typical one or two hours that it takes a yeast-bread to rise, you leave it for 12 to 18 hours.

And because you leave it for so long, you do not need a lot of yeast. Half a teaspoon or even a quarter of a teaspoon will do.

And also, because there is no kneading or much other handling of the dough, you can easily increase the hydration to 80% or more.

400g strong white flour (50g of which can be "interesting")
320g of water (for 80% hydration)
8g of Salt
a quarter or half a teaspoon of yeast (about one or two grams)

The results are so close to a nice loaf of sourdough bread that I became utterly converted over the last few weeks. At least for now.


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