Monday, March 21, 2011

A Good Bread Recipe to Begin Tonight If You Have to Go to the City Tomorrow

You can hear me on Martha Stewart Living Radio tomorrow at 8:30. I'll be discussing my new book, Bread Making: A Course! I don't like to run out of bread, so I just mixed the dough for a raisin and walnut boule (page 76). The recipe calls for a nice, long, 18-hour rise. So my dough will be ready to shape and bake when I get off the Jitney tomorrow afternoon at 2. This is how it will look (I hope!) when I slice it for dinner at about 7. Here is the recipe:

No-Knead Raisin Walnut Bread
Makes 1 large round

5.3 ounces (1 1/2 cup) walnut pieces
10.6 ounces (2 cups) unbleached all-purpose flour plus more for dusing
5.3 ounces (1 cup) whole wheat flour
1/4 teaspoon instant yeast
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher or fine sea salt
13 ounces (1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons) room temperature water
4 ounces (3/4 cup) raisins

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spread the walnut pieces out on a baking sheet and toast until fragrant, 5 to 8 minutes. Cool completely and then coarsely chop.
2. In a large mixing bowl combine the all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, yeast, salt, water, nuts, and raisins. Stir the mixture with a rubber spatula until it comes together into a rough dough. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough stand at room temperature overnight and for up to 18 hours.
3. Place a piece of parchment paper inside another large mixing bowl, with its corners overhanging the edges of the bowl and spray the parchment with nonstick cooking spray. Lightly flour a work surface and turn the dough out onto it. Sprinkle the dough with a little more flour and knead it two or three times, folding it over itself, flattening and folding over again. Form a ball by gathering the edges of the dough together and twisting them into a topknot, topknot side down, into the parchment-lined bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature until doubled, 2 to 2 1/2 hours.
4. An hour and a half into the rise, position an oven rack on the bottom third of the oven and place an 8-quart cast-iron or enamel Dutch oven on the rack. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
5. Sprinkle the dough with flour. Use a sharp serrated knife or razor blade to slash two intersecting lines, 1/2-inch deep, into the loaf to create an X. Carefully remove the pot from the oven and remove the lid. Use two hands to carefully place the parchment, with the dough still on it, in the pot. Cover the pot with the lid and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake until the loaf is well-browned, another 20 to 30 minutes. Lift the bread, still on the parchment, from the pot and place on a wire rack. Cook to room temperature, about 2 hours, before serving.

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