No-Knead Sourdough Cranberry-Walnut Bread

Latest bake – chewy and moist; great sourdough flavor!

Another use for my sourdough starter. Soooooo delicious – it’s time to make another one! Enjoy!

{Slightly adapted from the King Arthur Flour No-Knead Sourdough Bread recipe}
1-3/4 cups water
1 cup (8 ounces) sourdough starter*
5 cups (21-1/4 ounces) bread flour*
2-1/2 teaspoons salt (I use table salt)
1-1/2 cups dried cranberries
1 cup walnuts (I break them up into slightly smaller pieces)

*I measure my starter and flour by weight rather than by volume

First, measure water in a Pyrex cup and microwave for a minute. Stir and set aside until needed. In a large bowl (I use my stand mixer’s 5-quart bowl), weigh the starter and bread flour, and add salt. Finally, add the water, which should be lukewarm at this point. Mix and stir everything together (I use a large spatula) to make a sticky, rough dough. Then, mix the cranberries and walnuts (using the spatula again) into the dough. Cover and refrigerate the dough for (according to King Arthur Flour) at least 8 hours or up to 48 hours – I typically let my dough rest in the fridge for about 36 hours.

When ready to make bread, turn dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Shape dough into a rough ball and place it seam-side down on a large sheet of greased (I use vegetable oil) parchment. Using the parchment as “handles,” transfer the dough and parchment to a Dutch oven (I use a 6-quart). Cover and let it warm to room temperature and rise; this should take about 2-1/2 to 3 hours (dough seems to expand in width rather than in height). Half an hour before baking, preheat oven to 450°F. Just before baking, lift dough (using the parchment) out of the Dutch oven, dust loaf with a fine coat of flour, and use a sharp paring knife to make several 1/2” deep slashes on the top surface (I tend to just do a cross pattern). Place dough and parchment back in the Dutch oven, cover, and place in the oven. Reduce oven temperature to 400°F and bake the bread for 45 minutes. Then, remove the cover of the Dutch oven and bake the bread for another 15 minutes, until the bread is deep golden brown and crusty. Remove bread from the Dutch oven (using the parchment as “handles” again) and transfer it to a rack to cool completely before slicing. Serve at room temperature or toasted with butter (or in my case, I use Earth Balance Original Buttery Spread). Yum!

Note: With my first bake, the bottom of my bread was slightly burnt and the top got a little too toasty (see pictures) when I preheated the oven to 500°F and reducing it to 450°F when baking (per King Arthur Flour’s instruction in the original recipe). The second time, I reduced the preheating temp to 450°F and baking temp to 400°F, my bread turned out perfect!

Another note: King Arthur Flour has a great bread scoring technique post for gorgeous decorative designs.

Chock-full of cranberries and walnuts
First bake – dusted with flour and cut
First bake – top and bottom were somewhat burnt
First bake – the inside was full of deliciousness
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