Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Lisa's No Knead White Chocolate Pecan Artisan Bread

 There is nothing quite as satisfying and delicious as a loaf of crusty artisan  bread with a chewy crunchy crust to accent its deep well rounded flavor. Add to that crunch and chew the delightful  kiss of sweet pieces of sun dried cherries, toasted pecans and a nibble of  white chocolate and what you have is nothing short of divine. This is a loaf that literally took my breath away! It is so easy to make (yes it really is no knead) and so simple to produce, that I have to share it! This recipe came to me from my friend Lisa Barker in Salt Lake City, Utah and is now a part of my life. We made it 3 times, 3 days in a row. Then we made it four times again. It's evil good. I'm sharing Lisa's original recipe here, but I have to tell you that I found it perfect for switching out the nuts and fruit to fit my addiction needs. The pecans can easily be switched for hazelnuts (pictured) and the cherries can be switched out with golden raisins (pictured). I have a friend (Yes that's Evil  )who would rather die than add a "humiliated grape" (raisin) to her bread. To each their own. I loved it with golden raisins. The yeast amount is correct in the recipe, a mere 1/4 tsp. Don't adjust it. Let that bread sit overnight and do it's long slow ferment. That is when the flavors will really go deep and the texture will perfect itself. Mix it, just as directed. Bake it in a deep crock or, as I did, in a 12 inch covered Dutch oven. When you do this, the crust gets crisp and chewy just like it does in a steam oven used in a bakery. You'll love it! I know I did.

  Lisa Barker's
No Knead White Chocolate Pecan Artisan Bread
2 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp instant yeast
1  3/4 cup water, preferably purified
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1 1/2 cup diced toasted pecans
1/4-1/2 cup dried cherries
Directions: Mix flours, salt, yeast, and water in a large bowl. Add cherries, chocolate chips, and pecans. Stir well to make a very soft dough, and cover the bowl with plastic wrap.
 Let rest at room temperature overnight, or for at least 12 hours; the dough will be bubbly and puffy.
 Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and fold it onto itself a few times. Let it rest 15 minutes, then form it into a ball. Place it in a lightly greased bowl, smooth side down. Cover and let rise at room temperature about 2 hours, until a slight indentation remains when poked with a finger.

During the last 30 minutes of rising, preheat the oven to 450°F and place a bread crock (or a heavy, 4- to 4 1/2-quart oven­safe pot *chef Tess note: I use a 12 inch porcelain dutch oven with a lid) in the oven while it heats. When the dough is risen, remove the crock from the oven, and turn the dough out of the bowl and into the crock; the smooth side will be facing up. Shake the crock gently to settle the dough, then cover with the lid and return to the oven.
Bake the bread for 20 minutes, then remove the lid and continue to bake another 30 to 40 minutes, until the bread is deep brown in color and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center registers about 205°F. Remove the crock from the oven, turn the bread onto a rack, and cool before slicing.

Thank you Lisa for this outstanding recipe! I love it!
Chef Tess End notes.
If you want to use all whole wheat, you may do so, but you will need to increase the water to 2 1/4 cups.
It is also pefect for freeze dried or dehydrated stawberries instead of the cherries. I loved it with a 2 tsp of fresh fine minced orange and lemon zest in the dough.

Have fun with this recipe. I know I did!

Always My Very Best,
Your Friend Chef Tess


TARA said...

Raisins are EVIL! This bread, however is evil good!!!!

Pamela said...

Sounds yummy and easy! I am definitely trying this, but I agree...raisins are evil! And I am not a fan of dried cherries...but will try with dried cranberries. I love those!

Chef Tess said...

Okay...the raisin people have spoken. Xoxo. I love it!! Tara you will always be my friend. Pam...I think you're right, dried cranberries would rock!