Herbed No Knead Bread (Batter Bread)

Batter bread isn’t a quick bread, since it requires yeast.  But it doesn’t require kneading, and can be made in my brand new stand mixer – in fact that’s where the original recipe came from: the cookbook that came with my stand mixer, though, of course, I modified it a bit.

It  makes two large loaves of very flavorful, light and airy bread.

In a large bowl, dissolve the honey in some very warm (110°F water).  Add the dry yeast and the sourdough starter (if you’re using it) and mix well.  If you’re using the sourdough starter, make sure it’s mixed in as well as possible, without any globs floating around.

2 packages Active Dry Yeast from the Grocery store (4 and 1/2 teaspoons)
1/2 Cup very warm Water
4 tablespoons Honey
1/2 Cup Sourdough starter (Optional, to improve taste)

Add and mix well, using a spoon or an electric mixer:

2 Cups Large Curd Cottage Cheese
3 tablespoons fresh onion, grated or finely minced
3 tablespoons of herbs (all of one type, such as all dill or all basil, or a premixed Mediterranean mixture of herbs, or a premixed Herbs de Provence . Or get creative and mix your own! As long as there are 3 tablespoons total of dried herbs.)
4 tablespoons softened sweet cream butter
2 teaspoons sea salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 eggs
1 Cup Whole wheat flour

Add the rest of the flour, 1/2 Cup at a time, stirring well.  Do NOT add more than 5 cups of flour total.

3 and 1/2 to 5 Cups of flour

Only add flour until you have a very thick batter – much thicker than cake batter, but still a batter that can be stirred with a spoon.  Mine looked like this:

BatterBreadRising1
This is my batter before rising. It’s very, very thick — any more flour and it would look like bread dough. This batter barely pulls away from the pan when I stir it.  There is no way I could form this into a ball.

Let the batter rise in a warm, draft free place, until doubled in size.  (45 minutes to one hour.)

BatterBreadRisen1
Here’s the same batter, fully risen.  Warning: Do NOT punch it down with your hand, or you end up with a fist full of glop, and the sides of the batter are still risen…  I speak from experience.

Using a spoon, stir the batter down.  It doesn’t want to go down, but the more it’s stirred down, the easier it is to get it into two well oiled large bread pans.  I had a lot of trouble trying to pour it into the bread pans – this batter, stirred down, is too thick to pour.  I finally used a clean plastic cup and scooped it into the well oiled bread pans.

BatterBreadInPans
Batter that was scooped into bread pans. I should have used the larger sized pans….  I also should have smoothed the tops with the back of a damp spoon.  One lives to learn, right?

Let the bread rise again but keep your eye on it!  This bread rises fast and you don’t want it to rise ABOVE the bread pan.

BatterBreadReadyForOven
20 minutes later, my bread looked like this! The loaf on the left will be OK, but the one on the right is already over the edge of the pan…

Bake in a preheated 350°F oven for 35 to 45 minutes, or until bread tests done.  As soon as possible get the bread on a bread rack.  As always, let it sit for at least 15 to 20 minutes before cutting.

BatterBreadSliced
Happy Eating!
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