Fresh bread is a beautiful thing. And what if I told you that instead of making the trip to your local boutique bakery and buying bread for $5-8 a loaf, you could make it at home for less than a dollar, and it’s so easy my twelve year old cousin can make it? Read on, my friend.
I received Artisan Bread in Five Minutes by the very popular Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois from a good friend, and it has been kitchen life changing (thank you Hungry Eyes!!). I keep a tub of fresh dough in the fridge, and pop it in the oven whenever our supply of fresh bread runs out. Any bread that goes dry or leftovers gets pulsed into bread crumbs and stashed away in the freezer.
The secret is creating a high moisture dough, and allowing a long fermentation in the fridge….helping to eliminate the step of kneading. The result was a nutty, golden bread bread with a soft and chewy interior, slightly sweetened with honey. The crust was perfectly crisp from high oven moisture. This recipe is also versatile – shape the dough however you like to make boules, baguettes, rolls or loaves. My favorite is the sandwich loaf. Slice it up, toast it, eat it with jam, nutella, herbed butter, dunk it into soup or make it into sandwiches of course. And if you aren’t convinced at this point, did I mention your entire house smell amazing, too?
No-Knead Honey Whole Wheat Bread
Recipe by Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day
Servings: 2 full loaves
Prep time: 5 min, Total Time: 3 hours (resting and baking time)
- 6 2/3 cups whole wheat flour (avoid whole wheat pastry flour or graham flour)
- 1 tbsp kosher salt
- 1 1/2 cups lukewarm water
- 1 1/2 cups lukewarm milk
- 1 1/2 tbsp granulated active dry yeast (~2 packets)
- 1/2 cup honey
- 5 tbsp olive oil or any neutral flavored oil
1. Mix together whole wheat flour and salt in a bowl. Set aside.
2. In a separate 5 quart bowl, mix together water, milk and yeast first. You may notice a little bubbling from the yeast, which lets you know it’s active.
3. Stir in the honey and oil.
4. Slowly stir in your dry ingredients with a wooden spoon and mix well. You may also use a stand mixer wtih dough hook, or food processor with dough attachment. You want to make sure your dough is wet and there are no pockets of dry flour clumps.
5. Cover dough (not airtight), and allow to rest at room temperature for about 2-3 hours, or until the dough rises and collapses (or flattens on top).
6. Dough can be used immediately after the initial rise or stored in the refrigerator in a lidded (not airtight) container and use over the next 5 days.
7. Baking day: lightly grease a 9x4x3-inch nonstick loaf pan. Using wet hands, scoop out a 1 1/2 pound (cantaloupe size) handful of dough. Keeping your hands wet, quickly shape it into a ball by stretching the surface of the dough around to the bottom of all four sides, rotating the ball a quarter turn as you go.
8. Drop the loaf into the prepared pan and slightly spread the edges into the corner. You want to fill the pan slightly more than half full.
9. Allow the dough to rest for 1 hour and 40 minutes. Flour the top and slash using a serrated bread knife tip.
10. 20 minutes before baking, preheat the oven to 350F, placing a tray of water into the broiler tray or a pan on the bottom rack.
11. Place the loaf in a rack in the center of the oven (not too high or low). Bake for 50-60 min, or until deeply browned and firm.
12. Allow to cool completely before slicing.