The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Lazy Bread ~ No knead, No rest, 1 rise, POUR into pan and bake...

Kizzle's picture

Lazy Bread ~ No knead, No rest, 1 rise, POUR into pan and bake...

Hi all!

I'm a semi-lousy cook on the best of days, so bread baking is truly pushing my personal skill level envelope...

I got started on this quest through Bittman's No-Knead bread and the NYT. It WORKED. It was just a bit bland, though...So, while searching the Web for No-Knead recipes, to see if I could add milk, or buttermilk, eggs, sugar, etc., I came across a recipe that was published in the "Bread Baker Bible," for Casserole Bread.

Casserole Bread was even easier than No-Knead. Mix the ingredients (Proof 2 pkg yeast in 1C milk, 3 Tbs. sugar, 1 1/2 Tbs. butter, scalded and cooled, add 4 1/2 C. flour mixed with 1 Tbs. salt) for 2 minutes, cover and let rise for 40-45 minutes until doubled, beat vigorously for 30 seconds, pour into a greased 1 1/2 qt. casserole, and bake 50-60 minutes at 375.

The recipe made too much dough, more to fit a 2 qt., but it was EASY. I got distracted, and think I added water twice, because again, the loaf was heavy and dense, but MUCH tastier than the basic No-Knead. It LOOKED really odd, though, because of not having a rise time and skin formation. The crust is very thin, and while the top looks pretty "bread like," the parts that are in contact with the pan have "bubble craters" on the surface...Tasty, though. Very, very tasty.

Have any of you ever tried this type of bread? If so, any tips or suggestions would be appreciated. I will be making this one again, at least a few times, to see if my results were consistent, and to see if reducing the water makes a better loaf. The crumb was beautiful, just somewhat "soggy" and squeezable. The kind of bread, you pull the middle out of and can squeeze and play with before you eat it...

Will update you with my progress.


brakeforbread's picture

No Knead breads have definitely made the splash this last year or two and I think have helped non bakers get comfortable with yeast (myself included). I have moved on to all types of bread at this point, although surprisingly, as I find myself working with higher hydration doughs and a few stretch and folds, there is often very little kneading.

I did however just post a comparison of the Lahey/Bittman and the Cook's Illustrated No-Knead Breads. For what theyare, they are very easy and I think delicous. What's not to love about a crakly crusted, moist, open crumbed white bread. All that white flour makes for a nice sweet bread.

If you weren't happy with the first version of the Lahey/Bittman bread, you should try the Cook's Illustrated version. They add a touch of lager and vinegar that adds a nice extra dimension.

jbaudo's picture

The reason for the denseness of the bread is probably due to the fact that there is no second rise. Even though the recipe doesn't say to, you might consider letting it rise a second time.  Keep it well covered under oiled plastic wrap - wet dough like this sticks like crazy. 

And the sogginess of the bread is most likely because you added the water twice.  But sogginess can also come from not letting the bread cool down enough after baking (half hour is usually enough cool down time) OR it could be from leaving it in the casserole.  If you are leaving it in the casserole you might consider removing it and letting it rest on a cooling rack immediately after baking.