Sunday, September 26, 2010

Dim Sum Sunday - Bread

I am not a baker. Kneading does nothing for me. Truth be told, I don't eat that much bread. It doesn't have to accompany every meal I eat. Still, every once in a while I get the urge to bake some sort of bread. Usually that means biscuits, a fairly quick and easy bread to throw together. So you know when Jim Lahey's no knead bread cookbook popped up on my radar I had to check it out.

It's a simple concept. Measure, mix and let rise. A long rise, 12 to 20 hours. Then a second rise after which the bread is baked in a pot for an hour. You can see why this appealed to me aside from the no kneading. As long as you time it right it's very non-work intensive. The dough does all the work.

bread1

It gets all bubbly which is exactly what you want. But as you can see it's a very wet dough. I actually made two different methods of recipe. The first directly from the book...

bread2

...was beautiful on the outside but gummy on the inside which means it had rise problems. Worried that my second rise was not as robust as described in the book I went googling to see I was the only one with this problem. I was not. That lead me to a couple of websites that were helpful where the cookbook was not. The first is a post from the good folks at Breadtopia who have good suggestions if you find yourself running off the no knead track. The actual recipe I used for the second loaf is from The Steamy Kitchen.

bread3

Better than the first loaf I made but still not perfect. I'd love little denser interior and I baked it just a bit too long because the exterior is a little tougher than I like. Still it's wonderfully hearty bread that would be great with soup, stew or big hunk of cheese.

13 comments:

moi said...

Look at that! So pretty, with its holey crumb and golden, crunchy crust.

I love to make bread, and don't even mind kneading, as I find it both therapeutic and great exercise (ever notice a baker's biceps?). But I don't do it nearly as often as I used to.

But I did today! Although, I'll be up at Undaunted Baker later on this afternoon, because I got a way late start.

Making Space said...

I'm up! http://makingspacethejourneyout.wordpress.com/2010/09/26/dim-sum-sunday-bread/

Your bread looks like what my book says bread should look like. PROPS TO YA. Gorgeous.

Big Shamu said...

Moi, can't wait to see what you have for us. You know there is one dough I don't mind kneading and that's pizza dough. Otherwise, I'll leave it to those who truly love it.

MS,I love that you tried to make raisin bread. I might try that with this recipe.

Boxer said...

putting mine together... will be up by 5:00 pst.

I'll be back.

I really love what you produced. Wow. It looks perfect to me, not sure why you're not happy? Tatse? Texture? I'm going to print the recipes.

Guess what Shamy? I'm leaving right now to go buy.....

A STOVE.

Dani said...

It looks beautiful Shamy! I've read a couple of the no knead cookbooks, but I haven't seen this one. I'll search for it online this evening.

Thanks again for hosting such a fun Dim Sum. :)

LaDivaCucina said...

Well done, Sham, this looks just like the lovely crusty bread I love being served in those rustic Italian restaurants! Great photos, of course.

I had the best of intentions to make bagels today but it was contingent on the usual afternoon rain storm, which never came. So cocktails down by the pool with the boys it was!

Happy DSS kids! Going 'round in a bit....

Buzz Kill said...

Is there anything better than bread and butter (real butter - not margarine)? I think not. Unless I missed it, I didn't see in you post what kind of bread this is. The last picture looks like thick chewy crust and bubbles that are not too big. Nice.

I'm up at the Buzzkill with my bread machine Italian Herb Bread (yeah, I know). I'm glad you're doing the Dim Sum Sundays again.

Big Shamu said...

Boxer, the taste is better on the second loaf but the bottom crust is way too tough and while I don't mind bread holes...I don't really want swiss cheese bread. Smaller holes would be nice.

Dani, library. It's always my first stop for a new cookbook. Let them buy it first and if I like it then I buy it.

I see the Florida Girls were on a bagel kick. I'm sure Dani will share hers.

Buzz, hot bread and good butter? No, nothing better. Going over to check out your bread.

moi said...

I'm UP at http://theundauntedbaker.blogspot.com/

intuitive eggplant said...

Yours looks gorgeous, Shamy! I'm with you on not feeling like I need bread with every meal. But a good hearty bread is such a treat! Looking forward to checking out everyone else's entries! Happy DSS!

Boxer said...

I.Am.Up.

with BREAD PUDDING.

Big Shamu said...

Damn Boxer, I think we'll be putting you to work very soon....

Aunty Belle said...

Shamy,
them is gorgeous gorgeous photos--an' a purty bowl too. MY goodness! How does ya git such fabulous pics?

The bread looks spectacular. I want mine wif' cheese.

Happy DSS, Shamu.