Week 103: Do Nothing Sourdough

Move over no-knead bread, there’s a new sheriff in town: Yohan Ferrant, developer of the do-nothing method.

Back in November of 2006, The New York Times published The Secret of Great Bread: Let Time Do the Work by Mark Bittman, celebrating Jim Lahey’s “no-knead” method. It was modified here with new measurements and then, in May 2021, Kenji Lopez-Alt’s version, Updated No-Knead Bread Recipe was published along with a really informative article, How The No-Knead Bread Recipe Changed Baking.

There hasn’t been as much fan-fare around Yohan Ferrant’s do-nothing method, and I couldn’t find an original posting from him, just a lot of chatter about it on baking blogs. So, I checked out his Instagram feed, and finally came across a reel of him demonstrating how to make it. I’m listing the ingredients, but not a lot of detailed instructions, because, well, there aren’t any! Just mix, rest and bake!

Instagram link here.

Place a bowl on your scale and add ingredients in the order listed below.

  • 6g salt
  • 255g water
  • 90g sourdough starter (levain)
  • 350g flour (I used 325g bread flour + 25g whole wheat flour)

Mix with the handle of a wooden spoon, scrape sides down, flatten with wet fingertips, then cover and let rest for 12 ~ 24 hours, or until doubled in size and bubbly on top. The temperature of the room makes a difference, if it is 70 degrees, or thereabouts, it should take about 14 hours.

I like to put the dough into a straight-sided container, because then it is easier to tell when it has doubled in size.

Shape dough by lifting a side, stretching it out a bit and folding it over. Flip it, then round it into a ball. I let mine rest overnight in the fridge, because I was ready for bed.

.He puts his directly in the baking receptacle , then straight into a pre-heated oven. Bake at 450 for 20 minutes, then 20 more uncovered.

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