No-Knead Cranberry Yeast Bread

Take advantage of Maine's fresh cranberry season with this Dutch oven bread.

A trip to downeast Maine’s cranberry farms inspired Sandy Lang to bake this twice-risen, no-knead cranberry bread that is best served with soft butter.

3 1⁄4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour (Maine Grains makes excellent flours) 2 teaspoons salt
1⁄2 teaspoon instant yeast
1 3⁄4 cups water
1 1⁄2 cups cranberries (cut each berry in half)
1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

1. Mix the flours, salt, yeast, and water in a large bowl. Once stirred, use your hands to continue mixing the dough just enough to incorporate the flour. Work in the fruit and nuts. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a plate and allow to rest at room temperature overnight (at least eight hours).

2. Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface, and form it into a round loaf to fit a 9- to 10-inch lidded baking crock (a cast iron Dutch oven works great). Lightly grease the bottom and sides of the crock. Place the dough in, smooth side up.

3. Cover the crock and let the dough rise at room temperature for about 2 hours, until a slight indentation remains when the dough is poked. Slash the top a few times with sharp knife and place the bread in a cold oven. Set the oven to 450°F.

4. Bake for 45 minutes, then remove the lid and bake for another 5 to 10 minutes, until the bread is a deep brown color. Remove from the oven, turn out onto a cooling rack, and allow to cool completely before slicing.

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