Crusty No Knead Bread

Yield: 1 large loaf

  • 6 cups flour (800 grams)
  • 1 teaspoon instant yeast (6 grams)
  • 3 teaspoons salt (16 grams)
  • 3 cups cool water (600 grams)
  • Cornmeal and sesame seeds as needed

In a large bowl, stir flour, yeast, and salt together. Add the water, and stir until you have a wet, shaggy dough, about 30-45 seconds.  Cover bowl and let rise 12-18 hours at room temperature. The dough is ready when the surface is bubbly and has doubled in size.

Lightly flour a work surface and place dough on it. Don’t be alarmed if the dough is super runny. It will firm up. Sprinkle dough with a little flour and fold it over on itself once or twice.

Return the dough to the bowl, cover, and let rise another 2 hours. The dough is ready when it has doubled in size again.

A half-hour before dough is ready, heat oven to 450 degrees and put a heavy pot with the lid on inside the oven. (Cast iron or enamel pots work best, but the high heat will ruin the look of your enamel pot over time).

Carefully remove pot after 30 minutes, cover the bottom of the pot in a layer of cornmeal (so the bread doesn’t stick), then pour the dough into the pot and finally – sprinkle the top of the dough with sesame seeds.

Cover with lid and bake 30 minutes, then remove the lid and bake another 20-30 minutes, until loaf is dark, golden brown. Cool on a rack, then cut a huge slice, slather it with homemade apple butter, maple syrup or strawberry jam, and be transported straight to heaven.

Galette des Rois

Preheat oven to 375

Pastry

  • 1 box puff pastry


Filling

  • 13/4 cups almond meal
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons almond extract
  • 1 teaspoon rose water
  • zest from 1/2 an organic orange
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 whole almond or bean

Glaze

  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon milk

Preheat oven to 375. Lightly grease a baking sheet or line with parchment.

Roll out one piece of puff pastry and cut into a 10 circle using a pot lid or plate as a template. Place dough on the baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap. Roll out the second piece of dough to the same size, place on top of the first circle, then chill both together for thirty minutes.

To make the almond filling, mix together the almond meal, the two sugars, the salt and the orange zest. Add butter and beat until smooth. Stir in the eggs yolks, one at a time, then the almond extract and rose water.

Remove the almond filling from the refrigerator. Remove one of the circles of dough, set aside. Spread the almond filling on the circle of dough still on the baking sheet, stopping 1-inch from the edge.

Place an almond or bean somewhere in the almond filling.

Brush water generously around the exposed perimeter of the dough, then place the other circle of dough on top. Press down firmly to seal the edges.

Decorating Galette

Flute the sides of the galette by planting two fingers a ½ inch apart on the edge of the galette, then pulling the dough in between the fingers with the tip of an upside down paring knife to create a scalloped edge. Continue all the way around the galette.

To decorate the top of the galette, cut 5-6 lines in the top of the cake, from top to bottom. Between these lines, cut a series of diagonal lines, half up, half down (like veins on a leaf), ½ apart, from top to bottom.

Stir together the egg yolk and milk and brush evenly over the top. Avoid getting the glaze on the sides, as it will stop the pastry from rising at the edges.

Use a paring knife to poke 5 holes in the top, to allow steam escape while baking. If the galette puffs up too much while baking, poke a few more holes in it to release the steam.

Bake for 30 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from heat, and cool on a rack. The galette will deflate as it cools. Serve warm or at room temperature.