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The recipe for Easy Homemade Spelt Bread has been on Eva in the Kitchen for almost two years now, and is one of the most visited recipes on my site. It is also one of the most commented recipes, and many of you have given their tips and tricks to help others and to help improve the recipe. So I reckoned it was about time for an update, with new pictures, and more importantly, all your (and my) tips and tricks integrated in the recipe.
The smell of fresh bread is one of my favourite things in the world. And clearly, I’m not the only one who feels this way. The scent of fresh bread, fake or real, is one of the tricks supermarkets use to entice us into buying more. I always shop with a grocery list, which helps me to resist the temptation of buying more than I need. But that bread scent does make me leave the supermarket incredibly hungry!
Fresh crusty bread is the main reason I’ll never even try going Paleo or low carb. Imagine never sinking your teeth in a crunchy bread, straight from the oven and still warm. Missing out on that sounds like complete horror to me.
That’s why I’m giving you the recipe for this easy homemade spelt bread (no knead!). It’s not my own and I know it’s been shared by many people before, but since I’m still handing it out to friends who’ve never heard of this fantastic recipe, I think it deserves to be mentioned yet another time!
The great thing is that you don’t need any kneading. Though a bit of aggressive kneading is sometimes just what you need to unwind, if that’s the case, make pizza dough. It’s literally just 5 minutes of work, and after that the dough does all the work for you. The only thing you’ll need to remember, is to invest those 5 minutes about a day in advance. The dough takes at least 12 hours (but even better is 16-24 hours) to rise.
Besides 5 minutes of work you’ll also need a cast iron pot (Dutch oven) with a lid, one that you use in the oven at very high temperatures. I have a cute blue vintage pot. When my grandmother passed away, my grandfather felt like he didn’t need a lot of kitchen tools anymore. So he gave away a lot of her pans, and I was the lucky one to receive this fantastic blue one. Imagine all the dishes this pan made throughout the years, first by my grandmother and now by me. I really like that idea.
A few general tips before you start baking (with many thanks to all the tips and comments from you all!):
– I’ve received many questions regarding the oven temperature, and if you’re really supposed to set it that high. And yes, you are supposed to set the temperature that high. HOWEVER: there are two kinds of Dutch ovens, there are those that are made of thick cast iron, and there are Dutch ovens that have rather thin sides and bottoms. If you’re pot is not made of thick cast iron, I advise you to not go over 230 C / 450 F, to prevent it from burning, and to watch your bread during the bake. Another tip I have for those who have a Dutch oven with a thin bottom, or a Dutch oven that is just older and doesn’t have a very smooth surface anymore: use a piece of baking/parchment paper on the bottom of the pan, to prevent the bread from sticking.
– I’ve gotten lots of questions on the dough being too wet or too dry. The amount of water that flour absorbs is always a bit difficult to predict, as it depends on the weather, altitude, and condition of the flour. Maybe your flour doesn’t absorb as much water and you’ll be left with a pretty liquid dough. Though it’s never very easy to form the dough into a ball with the no-knead method, as it is a very wet dough, sometimes it’s almost impossible. What you can do in those cases: skip the second rise and ‘pour’ your too wet dough directly in the very hot pan and proceed like described in the recipe. I’ve done this several times with success. This method will give you a flatter bread than when shaped into a ball first, that’s the downside of it.
– The spelt flour I mostly use is organic and from the brands Moulin des Moines (which I buy at Bio c’ Bon in Paris) and Smaakt (which I buy at Plus in the Netherlands). The flour I use doesn’t look that different from ‘regular’ flour. I know some of you use very dark spelt flour, this can explain why your breads look darker than my bread does on the pictures.
– If you’re time pressed you can skip the second rise, but know that your bread will be flatter than with a second rise.
If you have more tips, please leave a comment below.
- IMPORTANT: Please have a look at the list of baking tips & tricks in the post
- 400 gr (2 + ⅔ cups) of spelt flour*
- 2 tsp of salt
- ¼ tsp of dried instant yeast
- 300 ml (1 + ½ cup + 3 tbsp) of lukewarm water
- Mix the flour, the salt and the yeast together in a big bowl
- Add the water and stir briefly, just until it has mixed
- Cover the bowl with plastic foil and leave it to rise slowly over 12-14 hours at room temperature (I usually do this overnight)
- After the dough has risen dramatically, and is all bubbly and sticky, flour your work surface
- Pour/scrape it out of the bowl and with well flowered hands you shape the dough into a ball
- Place this in a lightly greased bowl and leave to rise for about an hour
- Meanwhile preheat the oven to 250C/480F (for more information on the temperature,please read the baking tips in the post!) WITH the cast iron pot, including the lid, inside.
- The pot needs to get just as hot as the oven before you put in the dough
- After the hour of extra rise, place the dough inside the hot pot and cover it with the lid
- Bake for 30 minutes with the lid on
- After 30 minutes, take the lid off and bake for another 15 minutes, if the crust is already very brown, turn the heat down by 50 C / 120 F.
- Take the bread out of the oven en let it cool a bit
- You can test if the bread is well baked by tapping on the bottom of the bread, if it sounds hollow, than it's done.