|Yes, this loaf of bread is more than halfway eaten. I made it last night...|
This is, by far, the easiest bread you will ever make. It is my new favorite bread recipe. I’ve been making it like crazy all winter. And if you take about 5 minutes of hands on time out of your day, you’ll be a convert too. I pretty much guarantee it.
This recipe found its way to me in one of those rare, serendipitous moments on Pinterest, when I was feeling productive enough to actually make something the moment I pinned it (this has happened only two or three times, with amazing results I might add).
Easiest bread ever, you say? Well, we’ll see about that. I mean, I had my fair share of convenient bread recipes. I was a bit skeptical. But it’s true, friends, there is no easier bread out there that I’ve found.
And sweet baby Jesus is it delicious! The first time I made it, my husband and I ate the entire loaf while it was still warm. Lucas may have eaten one piece. But seriously, it’s oh-dear-god-I-just-ate-a-whole-loaf-of-bread good. I don’t think it gets much better than that (and if it does, I’m not sure I want it to…).
Easiest No-Knead Peasant Bread
adapted from Alexandra Cooks
makes one 9x5” loaf
1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
1 ½ cups lukewarm water
2 ¼ teaspoons sugar
1 ½ teaspoons active-dry yeast
In a large mixing bowl whisk the flour and the salt. Set aside.
In a small mixing bowl (or your glass measuring cup), dissolve the sugar into the water. Gently stir in the yeast. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 10 minutes, mixture will be very foamy. Add yeast mixture to the flour bowl. Stir until a sticky dough ball forms. The dough will be very wet.
Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 ½ hours. (When I’m making bread in the winter, I like to preheat the oven for 60 seconds then shut it off. With the door closed it retains a nice warm [not hot] temperature for the dough to rise.)
Grease a 9x5” loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray or butter (I always use my 1.5qt Pyrex loaf pan. I like to be able to keep an eye on that golden crust through the glass.) Preheat oven to 425°.
Using two forks, punch down your dough, scraping it from the sides of the bowl, which it will be clinging to. You want to loosen the dough entirely from the sides of the bowl, and you want to make sure you’ve released the excess air in the dough. Using the forks, scoop the dough into your prepared baking pan. It’s best to scoop it up fast and plop it in the bowl in one fell swoop. Let the dough rise for about 30 minutes or until it has risen to just above the top of the loaf pan.
Bake for 10 minutes at 425°. Reduce the heat to 375º and bake for 22 to 25 minutes longer, until crust is a nice golden brown. Remove from the oven and turn the loaves onto cooling racks. Cool in the loaf pans for 10-15 minutes before turning out onto wire racks to cool completely.
And eat a piece while it’s still warm with a bit of butter on it. There’s just nothing better.