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How to Make Homemade Bread Better than a Bakery

 

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When I first read Hadassah’s story about bread baking with Alan, I was so sorry I missed it.   I was really intrigued by no knead bread.  I kept it in the back burner and it took a few months to finally try it out for myself.  I wanted to make an olive bread, my favorite kind, so I found a recipe similar to Alan’s but that left out the salt.  My plan was to make it for Shabbat, but as I am prone to skim through recipes without reading the whole thing (I know, rule number 1, read through the recipe) the 18 hour rise time passed me by and on Friday morning after I already put the ingredients in a bowl, I discovered this bread would not be ready for Shabbat.

No Knead Olive Bread

No Knead Olive Bread

Instead of chucking all the ingredients into the garbage I covered the bowl and stuck it in the fridge in the hope of something halfway decent for Sunday night.  To my surprise, it was the best bread I had ever made!

This bread looked and tasted like it came from a bakery, I could not get enough of it and I couldn’t believe how easy it was.  The following week I tried Alan’s recipe, starting it on Thursday so I could have it for Shabbat.  FYI – I used half whole wheat flour and added roasted garlic and rosemary.  No one could believe I made the bread.

 

No Knead Pizza

No Knead Pizza

Around that same time I came across an article for No Knead Pizza.  The same person that helped popularize no knead bread, and inspired my olive bread recipe just came out with a new book.  Jim Lahey owner of Manhatan’s Sullivan Street Bakery is the author of My Bread and now My Pizza.  I tried the pizza dough recipe and it was the best pizza I ever made.

No Knead Whole Wheat Pita

No Knead Whole Wheat Pita

If it could work for pizza it might work for pita.  I now make a batch of this pita every other week and it just sits in the fridge for me to make as much fresh pita as I need each day for up to two weeks. This recipe is half whole wheat.

 

No Knead Challah

No Knead Challah

I did try a few No Knead Challah recipes, like this one, and they were okay, but not quite challah.

no knead whole grain bread

100% Whole Grain No Knead Bread

I also tried a 100% whole grain bread from Mark Bittman. While everyone at the table loved it, it is still a work in progress am and I will keep you posted as my journey with no knead bread continues.

 Do you have any tips for bread baking? Especially the whole grain and No Knead varieties?

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About Tamar Genger MA, RD

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Tamar lives in New York and is the mother of three amazing children, a Registered Dietitian, professor of Nutrition, and as you can probably guess, a foodie! Tamar loves to travel with her family and visits kosher restaurants wherever she goes. Although she loves the sights, she spends more time talking about the restaurants and food she ate! As a mom and a nutritionist, Tamar tries to balance her passion for healthy cooking with her insatiable desire for chocolate!

 

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5 Responses to How to Make Homemade Bread Better than a Bakery

  1. Yum! I actually tried the no knead bread last week and i was also surprised at how good it came out! I baked it in a Dutch oven and the crust was so thick and crunchy and the inside was chewy. So delicious. I did wonder what it would be like if I made it with whole wheat, now I know!

  2. avatar says: strandjss

    Thanks for the review of these recipes. I’ve been saving the No-Knead Olive Bread recipe for when I have time. I love to bake bread but arthritis in my hands is making the kneading difficult. This recipe looked really promising and your review has motivated me.

  3. avatar says: davises88

    I make no-knead bread all the time and follow some of the recipes from Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois’ books Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day and their follow up Healthy Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. I bake on a stone rather than in a Dutch oven and get a tremendous crust. I often make a rye bread that tastes so close to deli rye with lots of caraway. Also a black pumpernickel with toasted walnuts and dried fruit, whole wheat olive oil, cornmeal, honey-whole wheat for sandwiches, toasted millet and even quinoa bread. Sure I still do regular breads (my family vetoed no-knead challah), but we never buy bread any more. It’s all homemade.

  4. I’ve tried making a variety of bread recently at home, and these are the perfect recipes to continue experimenting with!

  5. avatar says: Anil

    I must say, I love baking and cooikng and am not to shabby at either, but bread-making is something that has completely evaded my capabilities as of late. I keep making what my roommate likes to call “failbreads”. Although I’m hoping my yeast was just old. I bought some new yeast last week and am determined to bake a decent loaf of bread! Will definitely be trying this recipe.

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