I Failed the No-Knead Bread


Posted on : 12:36 PM | By : Anonymous | In :

You know that bread that 4-year old's can make? Well I failed it. But it's not entirely my fault! It's what I get for substitutions. The first problem was that the dough didn't rise all that much. It's supposed to rise for 12-20 hours, but I checked it around 8 and it seemed to have reached a limit and actually looked like it might fall, but I left it. The total rising time was about 18 hours but I'm not sure if it doubled, which might have been due to my yeast not being the newest.

Then when I dumped it, it turns out that not having plastic wrap can be a bad thing because it had a dried-out skin on the top. I folded that in as the instructions said, forming a ball, and then wrapped it in the floured towel in my Calphalon stock pot where it had a nap for an hour or so. Then I was supposed to put that whole thing in a pre-heating oven for 30 minutes. About 15 minutes into that, I smelled bread baking. Now I knew that the bread wasn't supposed to baked during that time - it was another rising time, and I started worrying about the towel. So I pulled it out and sure enough, it was baking and the towel was scorched. I had a half-baked loaf stuck (more like fused) to a burnt towel. The first thing I did was leave the kitchen for a bit to avoid looking at such a sad sight. But it smelled so good... surely something could be done?

I pulled the remaining doughy goo and half-baked parts off the towel, dumped them back into the pot and baked them for another 20 minutes. I had to throw the towel away -a layer of bread had attached itself to the very fibers of that thing and weren't letting go. What came out of the oven was a bunch of chunks of very heavy, crunchy, but tasty bread pieces that had a faint flavor of sourdough (wherever that came from).

The lesson learned is that just because it is oven-safe doesn't mean you can bake bread in it. A much thicker ceramic or cast iron container would have been better... I just need to get one with a lid and I can try this again.

Comments (1)

I haven't tried the no-knead bread. It sounds a bit too good to be true. I have however figured out the secret to keeping yeast longer - stick it in the freezer, then just scoop out what the recipe needs a bit before it's needed and allow it to wake back up at room temperature for a bit before proofing. I've had my yeast in the freezer for several months and it's still good :)