Posted by: njbrown | March 24, 2012

Onion Herb Bread and No Knead Beer Bread

Onion Herb Bread

In roaming food sites, I came across Chef John’s No-Knead Beer Bread video .  As I watched Chef John form the dough into a lovely, soft, plump, silky loaf, I became aware of a long-dormant desire to bake bread.  Certainly, little could look easier than Chef John’s recipe, but not having beer, I continued to look for other quick and easy bread recipes.  I finally settled on the following recipe for Onion Herb Bread.  It takes two very short periods of rising, and makes a wonderful loaf of tasty bread in little time.

Once I got beer, I made Chef John’s recipe.  It takes far longer – about four hours – but makes a bread that is almost sourdough-like.  Since I really enjoy sourdough, and don’t have many days to develop the starter, this is a good alternative.

There is something very satisfying to making your own bread.  If you’ve never done it, either of these recipes is a really good way to start.

Onion Herb Bread
Makes one loaf


  • 1 (¼ ounce) package active dry yeast
  • ½ cup warm water (110 to 115 degrees F)
  • ½ cup warm milk (110 to 115 degrees F)
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon dill weed
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ cup finely chopped onion
  • 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour, divided


  1. In a large mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in water. Add the milk, butter, sugar, rosemary, salt, dill, garlic powder, onion and 1 cup of flour.
  2. Beat until smooth. Add the remaining flour and stir for about 1 minute.
  3. Transfer to a greased bowl. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 30 minutes.
  4. Stir the batter down, about 25 strokes. Spread into a greased 8-in. x 4-in. x 2-in. loaf pan.  (I put the beaten batter onto a floured surface and worked it briefly as Chef John did in his video – Nancy.)
  5. Cover and let rise until almost doubled, about 15 minutes.
  6. Bake at 375 degrees F for 40-45 minutes. Remove from pan to a wire rack. Serve warm.

Chef John’s No Knead Beer Bread


  • 1 ½ teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 4 ½ cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • ½ cup warm water (100 degrees F or 38 degrees C)
  • 1 (12 fluid ounce) can or bottle beer
  • 1 ½ teaspoons fine salt
  • All-purpose flour for dusting
  • 1 tablespoon cornmeal


  1. Stir together yeast, 1/2 cup flour and warm water in a large bowl.
  2. Cover and let sit in a warm spot for about 30 minutes.
  3. Stir beer, remaining flour and salt into the bowl. Mix until all the flour is incorporated and forms a thick sticky dough that pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
  4. Cover and let rise in a warm spot for 2 hours, until doubled in size.
  5. Scrape all the dough from the bowl with a rubber spatula, and place on a well-floured surface. Generously flour the top of the dough and form into a loaf shape.
  6. Sprinkle a baking sheet with cornmeal. Transfer loaf to the baking sheet and sprinkle the top with flour.
  7. Cover loosely with a towel and let rise for 30-40 minutes.
  8. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
  9. Place a small loaf pan of warm water on a lower rack to humidify the oven.
  10. Slash a long slit in the top of the loaf with a sharp knife or razor. Place the baking sheet on the rack above the pan of warm water in the oven.
  11. Bake for 35 minutes, until the loaf is golden brown.
  12. Transfer to a cooling rack. Let cool completely before slicing and serving.


  1. These sound delicious! Especially all the herbs and seasonings in the Onion Herb Bread. There is something therapeutic about baking bread!

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