Bread is an area of baking that I have been VERY intimidated by for the longest time. I don’t know what it is, but the idea of kneading and rising and making sure everything is JUST right is a little more stressful than I like to be when it comes to cooking/baking. However, the idea of “no-knead” really appeals to me, so I took what little encouragement my brother-in-law (who is a big bread baker) could give and did some research, pulling together a number of ideas and measurements together for the bread below. Now, Frankie said it was SPECTACULAR, and I happen to agree – HOWEVER, I didn’t get as much jalapeno as I wanted, and I remember having this kind of bread before and really getting that kick. So I have adjusted the below to reflect that, and plan to not remove the seeds next time either (just because if I’m going to say there’s heat, what’s the point if there’s not?), but if you’re sensitive to heat, err on the side of caution. This paired really well with the Ham & Bean soup I made last week, but in general makes for a really delightful breakfast, snack, or accompaniment to just about anything homey! Frankie has already request I make this again, so you’ll be seeing more of this on my Instagram I’m sure.
P.S. Don’t forget that you can order cookies from me directly from my Cookie Order Page on this very same blog! (Yes, shameless plug, but I need to keep pushing it!)
Hoping you are safe and well!
— Cooking Maggie
On No-Knead Dutch Oven Jalapeno Cheddar Bread
- 3 1/2 cups bread flour
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese (you can add in pepper jack if you want to give it a little kick), plus 1/3 – 1/2 cup extra for topping
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 2-3 large jalapenos – slice off 8-10 rounds, dice up the rest – 1 was not enough to get the flavor through, so I started with 2 but will be doing 3 moving forward. (You can also use pickled/canned jalapeno for a more mild flavor if you’re sensitive to heat.)
- 2 cups warm water
- 2 1/4 tsp instant yeast
- Cooking Spray, Parchment Paper
- In a medium mixing bowl, add bread flour, salt, 2 cups cheddar cheese, and diced jalapenos. Stir and set aside.
- In a stand mixer (or large mixing bowl with a spatula) add the warm water and yeast. Water should be warm, but not hot (like a baby’s bath water). Add flour mixture to the yeast and water, a mix gently till it comes together/minimal flour streaks remaining.
- Use a rubber spatula (sprayed with cooking spray) to fold the dough from the outside of the bowl towards the center, turning the bowl a little each time, until you’ve folded the dough in on itself 8-10 times. (You may need to respray the spatula if it starts to get stuck.)
- Cover with a towel and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour.
- After 1 hour, use the rubber spatula (sprayed again) to fold the dough in on itself again, 8-10 times. Cover with a towel and let rise in a warm place for 1 more hour.
- Halfway through this second rise, add your dutch oven (or another high walled oven safe dish), with the lid on, to your oven and preheat it to 450°F. Let it preheat for a full 30 minutes. Set out a piece of parchment paper large enough to go inside your dutch oven with a bit of overhang (I use pre-cut sheets for my cookies, so I used 2 of these and did a kind of cross with them – it really doesn’t need to be perfect).
- Lightly dust a counter or cutting board with flour, and flour your hands as well (or lightly spray them with the cooking spray – I ended up doing this for the next step). Turn out the dough onto the floured surface. Flip the dough over and brush off any excess flour.
- Fold the corners of the dough in towards the center, about 6-8 times, until a rough ball is formed. Flip the dough over onto the piece of parchment paper.
- Use a sharp knife to carefully score the dough (I like to make an “X”). Give the dough a quick spray with the cooking spray (or brush with oil), then sprinkle with set aside 1/3-1/2 cup of cheese and add sliced jalapenos.
- Use oven mitts to remove hot dutch oven from your oven and remove lid. Carefully use the parchment paper to transfer the dough to the dutch oven. Put the lid on, and return to the oven.
- Bake for 30 minutes with the lid on, then remove lid and continue baking another 20 minutes.
- After you’ve removed the dutch oven from the oven, tilt it slightly and use the parchment to sort of slide the bread and parchment out of the pot. It will come out easily.
- Remove parchment paper and let bread cool on a wire rack for 1-2 hours before slicing.