Cranberry Walnut Bread

Cranberry Walnut Bread

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes 
Rising Time: 18 hours 30 minutes
Total Time: 19 hours 25 minutes 

Equipment

  • 1 5-6 qt Dutch over with lid (oven-proof and safe for 450°F)
  • parchment paper

Ingredients

  • ½ teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 1 ½ cups warm water - warmed to 110 to 115 degrees F
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher salt
  • 3 cups bread flour, plus 2 tablespoons - plus more for surface
  • ¾ cup dried cranberries
  • ½ cup dried walnuts, roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest

Instructions

  • Make sure you have an oven-proof 5 to 6 quart Dutch oven with a tight-fitting lid that is safe up to 450°F.
  • Dissolve the yeast and sugar with the warm water (110-115°F). Let it sit for 10 minutes or until foamed up. If it doesn’t, discard and start over.
  • In a large bowl, whisk the bread flour with salt. Add the yeast mixture and honey, and combine until no pockets of flour remain, without over-mixing. Add the cranberries, walnuts, and orange zest. Stir until just combined. The dough will be very sticky and wet, that's normal. Cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap (without touching the dough) and let it rest for 18 hours on your kitchen countertop at room temperature. Yes, 18 hours!
  • After 18 hours, the dough will be very wet and sticky. Do NOT punch the dough.
  • Transfer dough to a well-floured surface and turn to coat with flour. Sprinkle more flour as needed, and flour your hands also. Gently fold the dough over from the edges to the center to form ball, being careful not to burst the air bubbles trapped inside. Then, turn the dough smooth side up and gently press the sides to re-shape if needed. Carefully transfer to a sheet of lightly floured parchment paper, smooth side up.
  • Cover with plastic wrap and let it rest over the counter for 30 minutes (no need to transfer it back to the bowl).
  • Meanwhile, place the Dutch oven with the lid inside the oven. Preheat the oven to 450°F for 30 minutes.
  • Score an X or any pattern you'd like on the ball of dough.
  • Remove the hot pot from the oven, and immediately lift the parchment paper to transfer the dough into the hot pot. Cover with the lid tightly and securely. Bake at 450°F for 30 minutes – during this time, do not open the lid, as you can't let the steam trapped inside escape. Then, remove the lid and continue baking for another 8-10 minutes, until the crust is golden brown.
  • Remove from oven and lift it up with the parchment paper. Let it cool completely before slicing. Enjoy!
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