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I know I'm not the only person whose mother clipped the article and sent it. Or--for those not on the receiving end of such old-fashioned activities--the only one who's been watching it spread faster than the sleeping kitties on YouTube. Mark Bittman's article about no-knead bread has been tearing through the food world for the last month, leaving terms like "phenomenon," "revolution," and "takes over world" in its wake. Published November 8 in the New York Times, the article detailed a bread-baking technique developed by Jim Lahey, the owner of Sullivan Street Bakery on West 47th Street in NYC. Not only does the bread require no kneading and very little yeast, it's good (according to Bittman, and my mom, and several hundred food bloggers), with, mon Dieu, a good crust. In lieu of kneading it mostly requires time--an initial rise time of 18 hours. If you're wondering, no, the no-knead technique is not new, although apparently the combinations of techniques in the recipe are (to paraphrase Rose Levy Beranbaum's analysis).
A helpful addendum published Sunday covers lots of lingering questions that have arisen from the enormous swell of interest in the recipe, such as variations on rising time, ingredients, kinds of flour, size of the pot. As someone whose urban kitchen living has not yet resulted in the Le Creuset soup pot I long for (a heavy pot seemed quite crucial in the original recipe), I was encouraged to read that many different materials of cookware seem to work. I may join the new no-knead generation yet.
Anybody tried it?