Cooktop Cove: How to make bread in your slow cooker
Freshly baked bread is undeniably wonderful. The steam as it pours out of the first slice, the warmth gently melting butter into its nooks and crannies, the soft texture as you bite into it... but who has the time? Well, now, you do. This easy no-knead slow cooker bread recipe is perfect for bread lovers with busy schedules.
Well, now, you do. This easy no-knead slow cooker bread recipe is perfect for bread lovers with busy schedules. No need to plan a day ahead. Start this bread earlier in the day and have a warm freshly baked loaf ready by dinner.
The recipe is for your basic bread, but once you are familiar with how your slow cooker handles baking bread, you can do it with any of your favorite dough recipes.
Pro tip: Slow cookers with a lot of wear on them might bake unevenly. Simply remove the insert and rotate it 180° halfway through to get a more even bake.
Slow cooker no-knead bread
Prep time: 15 minutes (does not include rising time)
Cook time: 2 hrs
Total time: 5 hrs, 45 minutes (includes rising time)
3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more
1/2 teaspoon quick rising yeast
1 1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups very warm (but not boiling) filtered water (about 100° F)
1. Into a large mixing bowl, combine flour, yeast and salt. Pour in the hot water and combine well using a rubber spatula. You can use cold water, but it will take longer to rise. Using filtered water also helps with the rising process. The dough will be sticky. Cover with plastic wrap and leave at room temperature for 3 hours, or until the dough has risen. It will have bubbles and still look a little soft and wet.
2. Place dough on a well-floured surface. You will need to use a spatula to separate it from the bowl, as the dough will still be very sticky. Sprinkle a little more flour on the top of the dough just enough to keep it from sticking to your fingers. Give the dough a few folds, forming it into a ball.
3. Place the formed dough ball onto a piece of parchment paper. Do NOT use wax paper for this. Lift the parchment paper and dough and place into a 4-quart slow cooker. A taller slow cooker will result in a taller bread because slow cooked breads do not rise in the same way as they would in an oven.
4. Cover and cook on high for 2-3 hours, or until the internal temperature reads 190° - 200° F. Check the temperature after 90 minutes if this is the first time you are making bread in your slow cooker. You will soon learn how long it takes your slow cooker to bake the perfect loaf.
5. Slow cooker bread makes a soft outer layer. For a browned crust, simply toss it into the broiler for a few minutes. Remove when the crust is lightly browned to your liking.
6. Let bread cool before slicing.
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