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Hi Bold Bakers!
Since getting my Alfa Pizza wood-burning pizza oven, I have been experimenting with a lot of different homemade bread and doughs. Since Fall is in full swing here in LA (well, it’s still 80F out) I thought why not start baking with some fall flavors and get in the mood for the weather to cool down (from 80F to 72F). I want to show you my recipe for No-Knead Cinnamon Raisin Bread. Although this bread looks like it would be a lot of work, it could not be easier to make. Mix all the ingredients in a bowl by hand and leave for 12 hours. Amateur or professional bakers, this recipe is for everyone!
Bread making is really fascinating to me, espicilaly using the “No Knead” method. It is incredible that you bring your yeast to life by mixing your dough correctly together, then watch as it grows and takes shape. Then you know you did a great job because you have a beautiful loaf of bread at the end.
We have made Pretzels, Cinnamon Rolls and Donuts using this method because I think it yields the best flavors and texture in your bread. And the fact that you mix the dough by hand, and not on a machine makes life easier.
The first job I had in the U.S at 25 was as a morning baker, and by morning I mean 2:00 am. To a 25 year old work and 2:00 am don’t usually go together successfully. It was in South Lake Tahoe, on the border of California and Nevada. In the winter when it would snow, all of the doughs would become sluggish and slow down. They would just lay there heavy with no life in them. I would take them into a warm part of the kitchen and try and get the dough active again. With a little TLC they would come back to life. So, when you are working with doughs just remember that they are like us, they need warmth, water, love and a little sugar to keep us going :).
This was the very first loaf of bread I made in my pizza oven! No lie. I stood there and watched very carefully as it puffed up and the crust started to form. With a wood-burning oven you do have to rotate the loaf but luckily I knew to stand close so one side didn’t get more “tanned” than the other. I’m proud of myself because one thing I have practiced is controlling the heat but also keeping the fire going at the same time. I can safely say I have gotten a lot better. I knew something wasn’t right when I baked a pizza in 90 seconds (a delicious pizza I might add).
When you slice the bread you can see your handy work. All of those bubbles, texture and crumb were created simply by the fermetation process. It is the gases that form in the dough. Just think about the little work you had to do to get this artisanal loaf of bread, it’s crazy! I have never been able to achieve this on a machine and that’s why I am an advocate for the No-Knead technique. No loaf is the same, which is the beauty of it.
Watch The Recipe Video!
No Knead Cinnamon Raisin Bread
- 3 cups (425g/15ozs) all-purpose flour
- ½ tsp instant dry yeast *
- 1½ tsp salt
- 1½ tbsp granulated sugar
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 3/4 cup (120g) raisins
- 3/4 cup (188g) milk
- 3/4 cup (188g) water
- In a large bowl whisk together the flour, yeast, salt, sugar, raisins, and cinnamon.
- Pour in the milk and water, and stir it in with a wooden spoon until your dough forms a ball**.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and leave on the counter for over about 12-15 hours (no less than 12 hours, it needs this time to grow)
- After this time you will see your dough is sticky, boozy and has at least doubled in size.
- Scrape your dough out of the bowl and onto a floured surface and fold it two times on itself, kind of like a book
- Roll your dough into a round ball or ‘boule’ getting it nice and smooth on the bottom
- Let rise for 1 hours at room temperature covered with a floured tea towel. It might take longer than an hour. It will rise and grow, and also spread out a little too
- Score the top of the bread with a sharp knife.
- Bake in a HOT oven at 400oF (200oC) for 45/50 minutes. To get a crispy, thick crust KEEP THE OVEN DOOR CLOSED DURING BAKING, please.
- Let cool completely before devouring.
- * If you use dry active yeast for this recipe use 1 teaspoon, and sponge it in the liquids for about 5 minutes before adding to the flour.
- **Add sufficient liquids to bring the dough together in a clean ball, then STOP!
Any left over bread, slice and freeze. Then toast it and have with butter, heaven!