Adapted from Spilling the Beans
This is the easiest bread you'll ever make. No-knead bread is pretty common on food blogs, but the ladies who wrote Spilling the Beans add some white beans to the recipe to up the protein and fibre content. This recipe uses light spelt flour, so it's sort of like a much healthier version of crusty white bread. Serve it to guests and forget to tell them that it didn't take hours of work in a hot kitchen. Wink. —Alexandra | Occasionally Eggs
1 1/2 cups water
1 cup cooked white kidney beans
1 tablespoon maple syrup or honey
3 - 3 1/2 cups light spelt flour
1/2 teaspoon active dry yeast
1 teaspoon salt (don't skimp)
In This Recipe
In a large bowl, stir together three cups of flour, the yeast, and the salt.
Place the beans and honey with 1/2 cup of the water in the bowl of a food processor and whiz until completely smooth.
Add the bean mixture along with the other cup of water to the flour mixture and stir until combined. If it's looking too wet, add up to another 1/2 cup of flour in small increments until it reaches the right consistency. If it's very humid in your home I suggest adding at least another 1/4 cup of flour.
Cover the bowl with a plate and let it sit on the counter, at room temperature, for 18-24 hours.
Generously flour a flat surface. Take the dough out of the bowl (your hands will get dough-y) and throw it on the floured surface. Sprinkle more flour on the dough and fold it over a couple of times.
Flour a cotton tea towel. Choose one that's smooth unless you want a dedicated bread making terry cloth tea towel. Again, sprinkle some more flour on the dough, and then loosely fold the towel over the dough. You want to cover it completely but not squish it, because then it won't rise properly.
Let it sit for at least an hour in a warm place until about doubled in bulk.
Preheat the oven to 450F. While it's preheating, place a smaller sized dutch oven (ceramic, pyrex, cast iron, etc.) in there. Heating up the container it's going to bake in is what makes it so crusty and awesome. Carefully remove the pot from the oven, slide your hand under the tea towel the dough is in, and flop it into the pot. It'll look a little messy, but the messy ones make the nicest looking breads.
Bake it with the lid on for thirty minutes, then remove the lid and bake for another 10-15 minutes, or until nicely browned. The bread should sound hollow when you tap it.
Listen carefully, and don't cut it until it stops crackling. If you cut it while it's still really hot it'll get rubbery. I know it seems like kind of a long and involved process based on the length of this post, but I promise it's easy as pie. Pie is harder to make than this bread. It's easy as cereal. Try it, you'll love it.