Tuesday, May 4, 2010

the Seriously Easiest Bread Ever

I got this recipe off the interwebs, and I have no idea where. So if this is your recipe, please let me know so I can link to you!

This is seriously, the easiest, tastiest bread you will ever make (wait, don't I say that about every bread recipe?). Except this time I'm not lying! Active work was like 5 minutes, and that included turning the oven on and digging out the oven mitts. Why is this bread so easy? While you are sitting around eating bon bons, it's doing magical wonderful yeasty things in your fridge.

Easy Bread

makes 2 1-ish pound loaves

1 1/2 cups hot water (like around body temp)
1 packet yeast
2 tsp salt
3 1/4 flour (a combination of whole wheat & regular is fine)

optional - an ounce or two of cheese shredded or sliced thin.

blend water, yeast & salt in a 3 Qt non-metal bowl. stir the yeast in, but don't worry if it doesn't all dissolve. add the flour, and mix until the dough is just blended. There shouldn't be any flour sitting at the bottom of the bowl, and the dough should be wet and very sticky. . . don't knead it! read that again: do not knead this dough. keep your hands off! Loosely cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and let sit at room temp for 3 to 10 hours. Yup, you read that right. just let it sit on the kitchen table over night.

Next morning, the dough should have risen, flattened out, and look bubbly. put it in the fridge. don't knead it!! once you are ready to make a loaf, take the dough out, cut off what you want to bake, and knead it just a little. I happened to have some fancy cheddar cheese that needed to be eaten, so i sliced it thin, and folded it into the dough as I was forming my loaf. Let the loaf rise at room temp for about an hour, then score the top of the loaf with a very sharp knife. Bake at 450 in a preheated oven for 35-40 minutes. put a metal pan with 2 cups water into the oven at the same time, the steam will create a wonderful crust on the bread.

I still can not get over how easy this was. 5 minutes of work gets you fresh bread any day of the week.

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