Jim Lahey’s No-Work Bread:

Jim Lahey's No-Work Bread

From Recipe Contributor :: Susanna | {Re}visionary Life

Happy April ladies! I hope by now you’re enjoying some warmer weather and a full view of the sun! My little girl and I have been longing for some outdoor activities, and we’re so excited to finally be able to throw open the windows and stroll through the neighborhood without freezing our ears off.

Speaking of throwing open the windows, beware of leaving them open when baking this bread because you’ll have a crowd of hungry neighbors waiting at your door for a slice of the freshly baked loaf. That or make a few extra to give away. You’ll completely make someone’s day with a gift like this, and it takes hardly any time to prep! No kneading! Seriously, you can’t find a simpler bread recipe than this one. But the taste and beauty of it won’t betray your lack of effort. People will actually assume you went to France for an impromptu bakery class and came back with the talents of sophisticated bread artisan. You think I kid? Try it and see for yourself! I won’t give away your secret.

Jim Lahey's No-Work Bread Jim Lahey's No-Work Bread Jim Lahey's No-Work Bread Jim Lahey's No-Work Bread Jim Lahey's No-Work Bread

Jim Lahey’s No-Work Bread

{makes 1 loaf}

[ingredients]

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4 cups all-purpose or bread flour, plus more for dusting

scant 1/2 tsp instant yeast

2 tsp salt

2 cups water, at about 70 degrees F

2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, optional

cornmeal

[directions]

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Mix. Combine the flour, yeast, and salt in a large bowl. Add water and stir until blended; you’ll have a shaggy, sticky dough (add a little more water if it seems dry). Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or put the olive oil in a second large bowl, transfer the dough to that, turn to coat with oil, and cover with plastic wrap. Let the dough rest for about 18 hours at about 70 F. The dough is ready when its surface is dotted with bubbles. Rising time will be shorter at warmer temperatures, a bit longer if your kitchen is 60-65 F.

Rest. Lightly flour a work surface, remove the dough, and fold once or twice; it will be soft but, once sprinkled with flour, not terribly sticky. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rest for about 15 minutes.

Shape. Using just enough flour to keep the dough from sticking, gently and quickly shape the dough into a ball. Generously coat a cotton (not terry cloth) towel with cornmeal or wheat bran (or use a silicone baking mat); put the dough seam side down on the towel and dust with more flour or cornmeal. Cover with another cotton towel (or plastic wrap) and let rise for about 2 hours. When it’s ready, the dough will be more than doubled in size and won’t spring back readily when poked with your finger.

Bake. At least a half hour before the dough is ready, heat the oven to 450 F. Put a 3-to-4-quart covered pot {with the cover} – it may be cast-iron, enamel, Pyrex, stone, or ceramic – in the oven as it heats. When the dough is ready, carefully remove the pot from the oven and turn the dough over into the pot, seam side up. {Slide your hand under the towel and just turn the dough over into the pot; it’s messy, and it probably won’t fall in artfully, but it will straighten out as it bakes.} Cover with the lid and bake for 30 minutes, then remove the lid and bake for another 20-30 minutes, until the loaf is beautifully browned. {If at any point the dough starts to smell scorched, lower the heat a bit.} Remove the bread with a spatula or tongs and cool on a rack for at least 30 minutes before slicing.

source: How to Cook Everything

//all photography is my own. please do not use without permission.\\

Jim Lahey's No-Work Bread Jim Lahey's No-Work Bread Jim Lahey's No-Work Bread
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