Baking With Mom, Part 2: No-Knead Easter Bread

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Okay, all you Easter bakers out there. I am now officially going to ROCK YOUR WORLD!!! I have stumbled upon something that is sure to revolutionize Easter bread baking. Are you ready? Maybe, you should sit down for this. Comfy? All right, here it comes……….

I Made No-Knead Easter Bread!!!
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Can you believe it? Well, it’s true. Let me start at the beginning.
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If you recall, my Mom and I had a marathon baking session the other day. We churned out several different kinds of traditional Italian Easter treats. We were elbow deep in flour, butter and ricotta cheese, and gossiping our heads off, when we realized that we had forgotten to start the dough to make our Easter bread. Easter bread is a rich and slightly sweet yeast bread, that is braided and baked with colored eggs entwined in it. It is very similar to challah. Although it is a very popular Italian specialty, many other European cultures also boast their own version of it too.

We were majorly bummed about this, because this particular dough requires two rises. That meant that even if we dropped what we were doing and started right then, it would be at least three hours before the loaves would be ready to be baked. Crap! I couldn’t believe we forgot about the bleeping Easter bread!
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Suddenly, it hit me. I still had half a batch of the master recipe for brioche dough from the Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day cookbook sitting in my fridge. If I could make doughnuts and almond brioche out of that dough, why couldn’t I make Easter bread out of it as well?
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WHAT A FREAKIN’ BRILLIANT IDEA!!!
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I raced home and grabbed the dough, and raced back to Mom’s. (It’s a good thing we only live a few blocks away from each other or else I would have probably needed Stacey’s defibrilator!) Within ten minutes, we had the dough formed and ready to rest. About an hour after that, the intoxicating aroma of freshly baked Easter bread was wafting through the house. Let me tell you, that house was already smelling pretty damn good from all of the pies we’d been baking. The combination of the two was absolutely heavenly!

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Anyway, those loaves of bread turned out fantastic! They were beautifully burnished on the outside, and soft and pillowy on the inside. We were able to get two gorgeous round loaves out of the dough I had on hand. With a whole batch, I’m sure you could get four.
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Imagine that! Who’d have thunk it? No-Knead Easter bread!

 

Since this bread is traditionally associated with the Easter holiday, I am submitting it as my entry in this month’s Bread Baking Day event hosted by Susan at Wild Yeast, and founded by Zorra at Kochtopf. The theme for the month is Holiday celebrations...
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For more Easter Bread recipes, check out:
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Hello and welcome to SGCC! I’m Susan, a professional writer, food columnist, recipe developer, wife, mother, daughter and sister, who used to be a lawyer in a previous life. My love of food comes from a long line of wonderful and creative Italian home cooks who didn’t always have a lot, but knew how to make a lot out of what they had. I hope that you enjoy yourself while you’re here, and visit often! read more >>

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