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No-Knead Chocolate Cherry Pecan Bread

5 from 4 reviews

This no-knead bread is my new favorite loaf! It’s a dense loaf, with some whole-grain flour, with a touch of sweetness from the chocolate chips and dried cherries. Perfect plain, or toasted with a touch of salted butter!

Like most no-knead breads, it has a long rise time. Just mix the ingredients the night before baking (or early morning), let rise 12 hours. Then shape and let it rise a second time for 2 hours. Pop it in a hot oven, covered, for 20 minutes, then uncover until fully baked.

I used a 9” Cake pan, and covered with an inverted cast-iron skillet. It’s best not to use a cast-iron pan to hold the dough. Some people have had difficulty with an enameled cast-iron as well, so I would recommend a 9” cake or pie pan, and then cover with a large skillet, pot, or an oven-proof bowl.

I found this recipe at King Arthur Flour and adapted it with suggestions from PJ Hamel

The baked loaf keeps fresh when wrapped tightly at room temperature. You can also wrap tightly and freeze up to 3 months.

Ingredients

Scale

Instructions

Gather Ingredients and Make Dough

  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, salt and yeast. Add the water and stir until incorporated. Add the cherries, chocolate chips and chopped toasted pecans, stirring to incorporate. The dough will be tacky and somewhat stiff, as in the photo. Cover with plastic wrap, and let rest at room temperature for at least 12 hours. The dough should be softer and should be doubled in size and  puffy.
  2. Pour the dough onto a lightly floured counter or board and fold it onto itself 3-4 times. Let it rest on that surface for 15 minutes. During this time, grease or parchment-line a 9” cake pan, and choose a skillet or wide pot to place over that pan once it’s in the oven. Place the greased or lined cake pan on a sheetpan.
  3. After the 15 minutes, shape the dough into a ball, and place it in the lined pan. Cover with plastic, and let rise at room temperature for 2 hours. At around 1 1/2 hours, check by poking the dough with your index finger. A slight indentation should remain. (If the slight indentation is not left, give it a bit more time, maybe an additional hour)
  4. Preheat your oven to 450F or 425F for Convection/fan oven. [During the preheat, you can place the pan or skillet you will use as a cover into the oven to preheat. This will help the baking process. But don’t do this without protecting yourself from burning! You will need to remove it from the oven while hot and place it over the dough. Once oven is preheated and the 2 hour-mark (above) is met, which should have risen and spread a bit in the pan. Cover the pan with your [potentially HOT!] skillet or pot and place the entire sheetpan in the preheated oven.
  5. Bake the bread for 20 minutes. Remove the covering skillet or pot, and continue baking for 30-40 minutes, until loaf is a dark golden brown. If you insert a thermometer, a loaf that is done will be 200-205F. Mine was perfectly done at 30 minutes. You can check after 20 minutes if you feel your loaf is baking too quickly. If it hasn’t reached 200F, you can tent it with foil to slow the browning.
  6. Remove the loaf from the oven and turn bread out onto a cooling rack. 
  7. IMPORTANT: Do not slice loaf until it is fully cool, or it may be “gummy”. No one wants that.

Notes

1. I purchase Salted Toasted Pecans for this recipe. But you can toast your own by placing 1 1/2 cups pecan halves on a sheetpan, and baking at 350F until they are nicely toasty, about 6-8 minutes. Watch the carefully so they don’t burn.  A good way to tell when they are done is when you can smell their aroma. You don’t need to salt them if you don’t want.

Nutrition

Keywords: No knead, chocolate, whole wheat, pecan, rye flour, loaf, bread, yeast

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