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No Knead Bread-Crust too hard?

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I have never baked anything ever in my life. I made the no knead bread for Thanksgiving and it was a hit. However I felt that the crust was almost too hard. I could have used it as a murder weapon. Is there anyway to tone down the crust a tad? Other than that it was amazing. This weekend I plan to roast some garlic and add the paste to the batter.

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  1. My standard trick for perfect crust (c/o Brother Rick Curry, author of The Secrets of Jesuit Breadmaking) is to keep a spray bottle of white vinegar handy. A quick spray before baking and then once during baking turns out a beautiful tender but toothsome-crusty crust.

    1. I think I read in one of the bazillion threads about this bread that putting it in a plastic bag before it's totally cool softens the crust.

      1. It sounds like your loaf was over cooked. I overcooked a few too and I think that's the big disadvantage of this technique: you can't check on your bread. There's no visual feedback and opening the oven door all the way to *really* get a look inside a solid vessel lets all the hot air out and interrupts the whole process.

        Seems to be a lot like life: you get advantages and disadvantages every way you go.

        1. The addition of a little fat to the recipe( 1 Tbl of olive oil)will richen the dough, and that will lessen the crustiness of the bread. You may need to add a bit of extra flour to compensate for the extra liquid, but the amount will be minimal.

          Brushing the unbaked bread with a bit of a egg wash will have the same effect.