And despite having seemed like an incorrigible tease, the BMG likes to make good on her promises. The recipe is yours, fellow misfits!
And I heart it. It can easily be made vegan (notes included), it’s easier to digest than conventional breads, you don’t have to proof the sourdough starter first, there’s no kneading, it rests overnight, and it can go from the fridge to the oven to the cooling rack in less than an hour’s time on a chilly morning. It stands alone as breakfast, but The Boy’s been toasting slices and spreading them with peanut butter for snacking. Wanna surprise yourself? Try it with extra-sharp cheddar and thin slices of avocado.
Keanu Reeves Whoah.
But first, a public service announcement about bench flour. I hate when I’m making bread and my hands are all goopy and then I have to go wash up and dig out the bag of flour just to dust my surfaces.
Dusting my surfaces–sexy, but often inconvenient.
Maybe you’ll want to do as I do and fill a screw-top jar with flour. Punch a few holes in the lid if you wanna turn it into a shaker. Then leave it on the countertop where it’ll be ready when you are. I have another jar just like it that I’ve filled with cornmeal, for when I’m baking pizza and savory breads.
Speaking of pizza and savory breads, The Boy and I played pool the other day.
Okay, so that transition wasn’t the smoothest, WHAT ARE WE ALL IN GRAD SCHOOL NOW didn’t think so.
So we’re at the pool hall and my Pink Floyd jukebox selections are abruptly cut off by a blaring country song that some local ruffians (okay, so they weren’t ruffians, more like respectable bar patrons BUT STILL) had picked.
Me: “Oh, god, what is this song?
Jukebox: “Rain makes coooorn, and corn makes whiskeeeeeyyy, whiskey makes my babyyyy feel friskyyyy…!”
The Boy: “THIS IS HIGHLY INACCURATE CORN LACKS DIASTATIC ENZYME ON ITS OWN AND WOULD NEED TO BE COMBINED WITH RYE OR BARLEY OR ANOTHER GRAIN IN ORDER TO UNDERGO CONVERSION INTO ALCOHOL!”
Pool Hall Patrons: “…”
You can’t take us anywhere.
No-Knead Sourdough Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread
Makes 1 loaf
1 cup sourdough starter (don’t bother proofing it first)
4 Tablespoons butter, melted and cooled (or use vegan spread of choice, like Earth Balance)
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
3 1/2 cups flour (I used 1 cup whole wheat, 2 1/2 cups white)
3/4 cup milk or nondairy milk of choice (I used almond milk)
4 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon Saigon Cassia Cinnamon
1 egg, beaten (or vegan flax egg replacer)
1 cup raisins (I used a mix of golden and black, but you do what feels good)
additional sugar (2 tablespoons)
additional butter or vegan spread (2 Tablespoons)
1 heaping tablespoon Saigon Cassia Cinnamon
Mix the sourdough starter and melted butter.
Now stir in the egg, sugar, cinnamon, and milk.
Now gently mix in the flour, salt, and raisins, holding back the last half cup of flour until you’re sure you’ll need it.
You’re not going for that firm, elastic ball you might be used to if you make bread or pizza dough the conventional way. The dough should hold together in a ball, but be sort of loose, tacky, and a little gooey.
Cover the bowl and put it in the fridge for 24 hours (or up to two days). During this time, the gluten will develop, the grains will ferment (and become more digestible), and the dough will take on a pleasant, yet delicate tang. At this point, I like to measure out my cinnamon sugar and my butter so the prep work is done for the next day.
When you’re ready to bake, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Flour the surface and your hands. Plop dough out onto the work surface and gently spread into a loose rectangle, about 1/2 inch thick.
Spread dough with softened butter. Then mix together the cinnamon and sugar, if you haven’t already, and sprinkle evenly over dough.
Starting with a short end of the rectangle, roll the dough into a log and pinch the seam to seal.
Fold the short ends of the dough under slightly and pinch again to seal.
Butter a loaf pan and put the dough into the pan, seams side down. Then set a timer for 40 minutes.
When 40 minutes have elapsed, put the bread in the oven. Bake until the crust is a deep golden brown, about 45 minutes.
Cool a few minutes in the pan, then unmold onto a cooling rack. Let the bread cool completely before cutting into it–it actually continues to bake as it sits.
© 2011, Genevieve P. Charet. All rights reserved.