10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 15 April 2011
I was sceptical about this book at 1st. Whilst not an expert I've made bread the traditional way for many years so I wasn't sure if this could work, but it does! I made my 1st loaf today; it looks and smells good and more importantly its delicious! Now convinced ( and you will be after just one loaf) I'm keen to try out the other recipes in the book - cinnamon and raisin bread next I think ;-)
If you love good bread, but are put off making your own as traditional bread making takes too long, then this is the book for you!
26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
on 9 January 2011
This book is amazing. It truly is a no fuss way to make bread. After tasting two different loaves, my sister and my mum begged me for the recipe. So I've ordered another two books for them.
You basically throw the ingredients together, let them rest, then pop it in the fridge, where it keeps for about two weeks until you're ready to use it.
When you want some bread, you take some, quickly shape it, leave it to rise for 30 mins, then bake.
22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on 17 October 2011
The basic priciple in the book is great (in fact Peter Reinhart in 'Artisan Breads Every Day' seems to have been converted to this technique).
However, there are conversion errors in the recipes
The Master Recipe (p 44) gives a bakers percentage for water of 78.3% if the imperial units are used and 83.3% if metric units used.
This carelessness is a major drawback.
I queried this on the authors website, and just got 'stick closer to 78% hydration'.
So it looks as if the imperial units are closer to the original American recipes.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 15 September 2011
Five minute bread is a fab book. I cook alot and was a little unsure how or even if this concept would work...it does!
If you are a busy housewife, mother, partner or someone who just loves the idea of fresh gorgeous bread whenever you fancy, this is the book for you.
I have a breadmaker, a great one that I love but I'm always 5 hours away from a loaf which is not convenient sometimes, how great to be able to snip off the dough I need and let it rest for 30 mins and bake. The crust is like the best french bread you buy in Paris and the smell is devine.
Give it a go! I think you will be suprised and delighted at the small amount of effort and the big results.
There are some nice recipes in the book too, my find of the year!
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on 5 January 2012
I have never mastered the art of bread making - it seemed too long, complicated and laborious. I have stuck to making the odd batch of soda bread (an instant bread) and buying rubbish shop white-sliced. However re-reading the list of ingredients in packaged bread gave me fresh determination and I felt that there must be a better way! There is! I came across this book by chance in a bookshop and with no space for a breadmaker it seemed like a good idea, although I was skeptical. I am not a baker and not even a very good cook - but my first loaf was good enough for me to be very excited! It was so easy and so quick. I soon started experimenting with the different recipes and soon learnt the importance of quality fresh flour.
I have not bought bread in over 2 months now and we always have a loaf on the go. I would say that the bread is much better once cooled, it keeps for several days in the fridge (although its always eaten within 3 days in my house). The basic dough can also be used for pizza bases which taste great. The recipes are easy to play around with - adding vegtables, dried fruit, herbs etc... I have converted many friends and family members who were initially very cynical.
The only draw back is needing room in the fridge to store the dough - although i no longer need space to store shop bread.
Buy this book and prepared to become fanatical!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 9 February 2014
For more than 20 years I've made my own bread the traditional way. Because I don't like all that kneading I bought a kenwood mixer primarily for the dough hook function, and I, and friends, were always very happy with the results. I'd make three loaves at a time, then slice and freeze it to use as and when. But wow this book has completely changed my bread making, it's quick, simple and so versatile, and the results are even better than before. I've had the book for three months and, although the results were great from the first batch, I think you do need to fiddle about with the basic recipe to suit the flour you are using, my first batches were too sloppy if strictly following the recipe, and free form loaves always spread themselves out rather than up. Plain white flour can vary from country to country, the crop, the milling process, my brother moved to America and had to adjust british recipes for the flour rather than the measurements. So now I have a good idea of the consistency I am looking for and add flour or water as necessary. I also use less salt than in the book, probably about half the amount, because I found the amount they use far too salty. I love that I can have fresh bread so easily, loaves, rolls, nan, pitta, from the same batch of dough, and yes it does keep and improve over time, and whilst I might have a bowl of dough in the fridge (I make half the amount because there only two of us) it saves space in the freezer, and now I can have fresh bread wherever and whenever without missing my Kenwood.
Further reading turned up their healthy artisan bread book using the same principles, but using vital wheat gluten to help with the rising process when baking with whole wheat flour or other ingredients. What a revelation that is, it's not easy to purchase in the uk, I couldn't find one single shop selling it, but you can find it on line and it's well worth the purchase if, like me, you want to make bread with the addition of whole wheat flour, oats, seeds etc etc. Even if I went back to the old method, not at all likely, I'd now add vital wheat gluten to improve the end result. The book itself is enjoyable, with lots of ideas.
One final suggestion, a halogen oven is a great addition to the kitchen for all sorts of reasons, economy and convenience amongst many, and if, like me, you twitch a little at firing up the oven for a single batch of bread to go with that bowl of soup at lunchtime it makes sense to add to your kitchen appliances, set the oven to the correct temperature for a couple of minutes and off you go, the bread, unlike most other things, takes as long to cook as in a conventional oven, but the halogen oven is much less expensive to run and super useful.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 8 June 2013
I do feel the book sorts of double talk, like giving you the method, then gives you another method at the same time. I find a bit confusing, get past that and enjoy. The idea is good, just play with it, and practice, the bread does have a nice flavour, the dough takes five minutes to make, once you get past the 2 hour rise & 8 hour refridgeration, then it's up to you, you can have fresh bread in 40 minutes.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on 15 February 2013
I'd been making occasional loaves using the No Knead Bread technique and having some success. However, I found that leaving the dough to prove too long could still result in patchy results.
While looking on various forums to see if overproving was my problem I stumbled upon references to the 5 Minute Artisan bread method that is covered in this book. It has similarities to the No Knead technique (stir ingredients to combine, wet shaggy dough, no kneading) but it differs in that after the initial rise the dough goes into the fridge and can be drawn off as needed.
I've been using the technique for a few weeks now, have cooked over a dozen loaves and have yet to have one that isn't delicious.
The book has 2 sets of measurements - metric and imperial - I stick to the imperial. I measure the water and flour pretty accurately. With the flour I'm using I add an extra ounce to the recipe for the basic boule dough and it comes out great.
I've not had a batch of dough last more than a week - it gets baked sooner than that - but I find that the dough has more 'spring' (rising in the oven) in the first few days after the dough is made.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 3 July 2013
I have had chronic fatigue and though much improved still find the idea of kneading bread more than I can cope with. I came across this book by chance and today made bread for the first time in a few years. I am so happy, the loaf is lovely and fluffy inside with an ok, though not perfect crust (maybe would have been if I had been able to resist eating some before it was cold).
Even 'normal' bread recipes rarely give perfect results, so it seems churlish to criticize this in any way. It is liberating to know bread doesn't need to be kneaded and dough can be kept in the fridge for a fortnight! I am looking forward to trying out the dough as it matures as I love sourdough bread.
I am going to be impressing visitors with bread magicked from the fridge and cooked under their very noses!
The only problem I have with this is how much bread I am now going to be eating when I am trying to lose some weight!
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
I'm amazed how fast and easy bread making can be and a little bit angry that I did not read one of their books before... As a mother of 3 children I can never find enough time but now at least I can bake my bread whenever I feel like and it honestly does not take me more than 5 minutes a day (!)
The only minus of this book is that the bread tastes too good to eat just a slice or two...