I had heard about Jim Lahey’s no knead bread several years ago and decided it would be a great addition to this semester’s bread and soup class. I checked out the recipe and knew very few of my students would want to wait 24 hours for bread, so I have set out on a quest to make it quicker. I read about Mark Bittman’s attempts and in the quest for the almost no-knead bread recipe from Cook’s Illustrated they must have made 100 loaves. I hope it doesn’t take me that many tries.
I am on loaf #5. The first 2 breads were too flat (with respect to Goldilocks), so I used a smaller pan for loaf #3 and it was beautiful, with a wonderfully crispy crust, but it lacked flavor. This one I named Chrissy after the Suzanne Somers character in Three’s Company. For loaf #4, I added some beer and vinegar as suggested by Cook’s and cut down on the water. Again the loaf was beautiful, with a wonderfully crispy crust, but it still lacked that bit of sour dough flavor I am looking for. Have to call this one Lindsay, since alcohol was involved, but the flavor was missing. Loaf #5 has been in the refrigerator for 2 days and I won’t get to bake it until tomorrow. I will have to redo loaf #5, because the extra time it has been in the fridge will change the flavor and I really want this to be quicker, not longer. Fortunately the bread is really easy to make and takes very little time to put together. I will have to start passing out the extra loaves or we will be gaining some weight. I will post the recipe when I get it to were I want it. Thinking of naming that one Chelsea.