Earlier this week I made a loaf of No-Knead Bread.  It was awesome.  The crust was crunchy and delicious.  So I decided to try a different type of bread.  Whole Wheat.  Granted it is not that different but the whole wheat flour made the bread react differently.  Granted the loaf looks delicious, it needed a few more hours of rising time.

Whole Wheat No-Knead Bread

Once again the loaf came out amazing looking.  The crust was dark and crunchy.

Whole Wheat No Knead Bread – adapted from Jim Lahey via NYT

  • 2 cups bread flour or all purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons salt (depends on your taste)
  • 1/4 teaspoon instant dry yeast
  • 1 1/2 cups water

Mix the flour, salt and yeast into a bowl.  Remember, that a packet of yeast is actually 2 1/4 tsp.  So you only need 1/9th of the packet.  I know that it sounds weird, but you do not need any more yeast than that.  You can store the remaining yeast in the refrigerator for your next loaf of bread.  Trust me, after tasting this bread you will make another loaf.

Mix in the water into the dough.  You want to add enough water to just get the flour moist.  You may need a little more, or a little less water depending on the humidity in your house.  For the most part, 1 1/2 cups of water works perfectly.  Once you have the water mixed in, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it sit for 12-18 hours at room temperature.  This works great if you want fresh bread in the morning.  After 12-18 hours the dough will have doubled and gotten all bubbly.

Let it rise a second time

Flour the counter and turn the dough out on to the counter.  Make sure to heavily flour the counter as the dough is quite sticky.  Fold the dough into thirds.  Take the left side and fold it into the middle.  Then take the right side and fold it into the middle.  Then take the top and fold it over the bottom.

Next using cornmeal, semolina or wheat bran, dust the inside of a cotton towel.  Make sure to not skimp out on dusting.  Form the dough into a round or oval loaf.  My dutch oven is oval, so a football shaped loaf is what I made.  Place the bread dough seem side down on the towel.  Dust the top of the dough and wrap it up in the towel.  Let it rest for about 4 hours (I let mine rest for 2 hours like the regular No-Knead recipe).

With about 30 minutes left in the resting period, preheat the oven to 500 degrees.  Place the dutch oven in the oven to preheat.  If you don’t have a dutch oven, I have heard that a 5 quart pyrex bowl with a pyrex pie plate as a lid can be used instead.

Once the dutch oven has heated for 30 minutes, open the oven and remove the dutch oven lid.  Be careful, it is 500 degrees.  Next plop the dough from the towel into the dutch oven.  Once again, be careful.  Place the cover back on the pot and place it into the oven for 30 minutes.

Flip the dough

When the 30 minutes is up, remove the lid and turn the oven down to 450 degrees.  Cook for another 15 minutes.

Remove the lid

Remove the pan from the oven and place the bread onto a rack to cool for an hour or two before cutting.

Let rest on a rack

This was some of the tastiest bread I have ever tasted.

Look at the crust

The long proofing period allowed the bread to create a depth of flavor that is unmatched in any type of homemade bread recipe I have tried so far.  I would recommend having the bread rest for 4-6 hours after the folding method so that it rises.  The bread tasted great but it lacked the airiness of the first loaf.  I think the whole wheat is to blame.  To fix this, let it rise for longer.

Rex is an avid griller, barbecuer and bacon enthusiast. He is the Pitmaster for the Rex BBQ competition team. Rex was also featured on the TV show American Grilled. If you have any questions or wish to have Rex decode your favorite dish, click on the ASK REX link in the menu above.

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