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No-Knead Bread Help: Water, Towel, Pancake

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No-Knead Bread Help: Water, Towel, Pancake

wellthen | Aug 4, 2010 10:02 PM

While I've read through all of the no-knead threads I thought were relevant, I didn't see answers to the following questions; maybe I missed them. In any case, if you can help, I'd be really grateful. I made no-knead bread for the first time last night/tonight, and:

--when scraping the dough out of the bowl after the first rise (I did 18 hours), there was water at the bottom of the bowl.
--the dough hardly rose during the second rise (I let it go for 2 hours).
--the bread, after baking, was about 3/4" tall.

Why did these things happen, and what can I do to correct them?

Also, is it absolutely necessary to let the second rise happen in the dishtowel? I let it rise in a warm (room temperature) enameled dutch oven with a cotton dishtowel loosely covering the top of it, then put it (still in the dutch oven which was still at room temperature) in the oven, which the King Arthur Web site said was fine to do. Is this what caused the pancake?

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