Saturday, August 9, 2008

Bread, My New Best Friend

Ok, remember several months ago I announced that I had conquered bread making. That it was something I could do with confidence and provide healthy bread for my family.

Yea yea …whatever, Mary.

I haven’t cracked a bag of flour since then.

Not once.

I work full time. I blog. I have a life.

I haven’t got the time to rise, punch down, rise, punch down.

Until I discovered this. Thanks to cookiecrumb and her knock out blog, I'm Mad and I Eat.

She provided a life changing moment for me.

Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois.

I watched the YouTube video.
I was sold. I bought the book.

These guys have got it goin’ on, people. They totally simplify the bread making process using natural ingredients and a brilliant method. It is without a doubt tailor made for someone who works full time and loves to cook but hasn’t had the inclination or the talent or the patience to be a bread baker.

Basically you dump flour, water, salt and instant yeast in a container with a lid. You stir to combine, you don’t knead. Let it sit two hours at room temp. Put in the fridge and it sits. And thinks. For up to fourteen days. When you want some bread, you shake a little flour over the top of the dough, pull up a grapefruit size mound o’ dough, shape it, let it sit 20, preheat the oven, slash it and let it sit 20 and then bake for specified time.



I have, at the present time, two types of bread dough in my refrigerator, the boule and European peasant bread. If I need a baguette, or batard or a quick pissaladiere ( straight from the book and a great Sunday supper), I use the boule.

For sandwiches, panzanella, bruschetta, I use the European.

I’m considering making brioche for Christmas presents.

Me. Brioche.

It’s a miracle.

Buy the book. It will change your life.


noble pig said...

Wow, now you have me interested. What beautiful bread you have made! Now, I have to look into this!

[eatingclub] vancouver || js said...

I've heard so many good things about 5-minute bread baking. Is it really that easy? The bread you have looks delicious. I want to, I want to, I want to -- is it really that easy? Wait, I've already asked that. LOL

cook eat FRET said...

no way

Pam said...

I use my bread machine to do my dough, but this sounds even easier, and more fun!

Jim Voorhies said...

Wow. That's a serious change from how I do it now, making the poolish, letting it rise, then storing it a couple of days.

Jeff Hertzberg said...

Mary, thank you so much for mentioning our book here. I'm Jeff Hertzberg, one of the co-authors of Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. I'm so glad our recipes are working well for you. Come visit us anytime at, where you can post questions into any "Comments" field, or click on "Bread Questions" on the left side of the homepage and choose among the options.

Jeff Hertzberg

fluffernutter said...

When it's cool enough to turn on the oven again, I'm trying this. I loved the NY Times no-knead, refrigerator rise bread from last year, and my only complaint was that I couldn't get a boule shape. So this looks ideal --thanks for showing us this innovation.

Marie said...


Will we go to hell?

Mary Coleman said...

Cathy: Thanks, it's so easy!
Vancouver: It is that easy. I'm repeating myself!! Five minutes. That's it!
Claudia: Absolutely positively works. I think we've made maybe 10 breads now, and each one is great. I promise.
Pam: It is so much more fun and easier than the bread machine. The crumb is better too. Try it.
Jim: it is a serious change from the old ways, but the bread is good, makes great sandwiches and it's fun.
Jeff: you know I'm singing your praises all day long!!! Thanks for stopping by.
Fluff: This is the boule shape. The perfect sized bread. And you don't have to wait overnight to make it. You can bake it the same day, if you want.
Marie: Ha!!! Well, possibly, but it certainly won't be because of this fabulously easy bread!!!

Jessy and her dog Winnie said...

Your bread looks great!

Anonymous said...


This looks way better than the stimulus package! Bread in five minutes, but it uses like a levain?

What's next for you, pate choux or pate feuilletee?


E for KC said...

I love making bread but I gotta admit-it takes a ton of time. I haven't tried this yet, but it's high on my list. And no one needs to know that I didn't spend hours kneading and punching down.

cookiecrumb said...

You rock!!! Congratulations.
I'm still scared of it for some reason, but I always have a batch of dough in the fridge. It is THAT easy.
Your bread looks beautiful.
I'm trying a baguette tomorrow.

Jim Voorhies said...

The book came in and I'm going to try this.