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Cherry Chocolate Pecan Artisan Bread

August 27, 2018

 No-knead artisan bread has been incredibly popular across the country.  Generally, varieties of no-knead bread are savory. For those craving a sweet yeast-raised artisan bread, this chocolate bread is a home baker's dream. With chunks of pecan, chocolate chips and dried cherries it is a hearty and delightful tender sweet bread.  Sliced thick, it makes a unique French toast. 



No Knead Cherry Chocolate Pecan Artisan Bread


3 ½ cups Panhandle Milling Bread Flour

½ cup baker’s cocoa

2 ½ tsp salt

1/2 tsp instant yeast

½ cup sugar

1 3/4 cup water, preferably purified

1 Tbsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

1/2 cup dried cherries


Directions: Mix flour, cocoa, salt, yeast, sugar, water and vanilla in a large bowl. Add cherries and chocolate chips. Stir well to make a very soft dough and cover the bowl with plastic wrap.

 Let rest at room temperature overnight, or for at least 8 hours; the dough will be bubbly and puffy.  Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and fold it onto itself a few times. Let it rest 15 minutes, then form it into a ball. Place it in a lightly greased bowl, smooth side down. Cover and let rise at room temperature about 2 hours, until a slight indentation remains when poked with a finger. 

During the last 30 minutes of rising, preheat the oven to 450°F and place a bread crock or a heavy, 4- to 4 1/2-quart oven safe Dutch oven in the oven while it heats. When the dough is risen, remove the crock from the oven, and turn the dough out of the bowl and into the crock; the smooth side will be facing up. Shake the crock gently to settle the dough, then cover with the lid and return to the oven. 

Bake the bread for 20 minutes, then remove the lid and continue to bake another 30 to 40 minutes, until the bread is deep brown in color and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center registers about 180°F. Remove the crock from the oven, turn the bread onto a rack, and cool before slicing.