No-Knead Crusty White Bread

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No-Knead Crusty White Bread

A very simple crusty white bread that requires no kneading! W00t!
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Resting Time4 hrs
Course: Bread
Keyword: bread
Calories: 100kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 ½ c all-purpose flour
  • 3 c lukewarm water (about 105°)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 ½ tsp intant or active dry yeast

Instructions

  • Combine all of the ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
  • Mix and stir everything together to make a very sticky, rough dough. If you have a stand mixer, beat at medium speed with the beater blade for 30 to 60 seconds. If you don't have a mixer, just stir-stir-stir with a big spoon or dough whisk until everything is combined.
  • Next, you're going to let the dough rise. If you've made the dough in a large mixing bowl, you're all set — just let it stay there, covering the bucket with a lid or plastic wrap; a shower cap actually works well here.
  • Cover the bowl or bucket, and let the dough rise at room temperature for 2 hours. Then refrigerate it for at least 2 hours, or for up to about 7 days. (If you're pressed for time, skip the room-temperature rise, and stick it right into the fridge). The longer you keep it in the fridge, the tangier it'll get; if you chill it for 7 days, it will taste like sourdough. Over the course of the first day or so, it'll rise, then fall. That's OK; that's what it's supposed to do.
  • When you're ready to make bread, plop the sticky dough onto a floured work surface, and round it into a ball, or a longer log. Don't fuss around trying to make it perfect; just do the best you can.
  • Place the loaf on a piece of parchment (if you're going to use a baking stone); or onto a lightly greased or parchment-lined baking sheet. Sift a light coating of flour over the top; this will help keep the bread moist as it rests before baking.
  • Let the loaf warm to room temperature and rise; this should take about 60 minutes (or longer, up to a couple of hours, if your house is cool). It won't appear to rise upwards that much; rather, it'll seem to settle and expand. Preheat your oven to 450°F while the loaf rests. If you're using a baking stone, position it on a middle rack while the oven preheats. Place a shallow metal or cast iron pan (not glass, Pyrex, or ceramic) on the lowest oven rack, and have 1 cup of hot water ready to go.
  • When you're ready to bake, take a sharp knife and slash the bread 2 or 3 times, making a cut about 1/2" deep. The bread may deflate a bit; that's OK, it'll pick right up in the hot oven.
  • Place the bread in the oven — onto the baking stone, if you're using one, or simply onto a middle rack, if it's on a pan — and carefully pour the 1 cup hot water into the shallow pan on the rack beneath. It'll bubble and steam; close the oven door quickly.
  • Bake the bread for 25 to 35 minutes, until it's a deep, golden brown.
  • Remove the bread from the oven, and cool it on a rack. Store leftover bread in a plastic bag at room temperature.

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