February is Chocolate Lover’s Month. What better way to celebrate than with Chocolate Bread. And, it just so happens that Lisa of Parsley, Sage, Desserts and Line Drives chose Bread with Chocolate for Bread Baking Day (BBD #47).
It didn’t take me too long to decide what bread I wanted to make. I chose another one of Jim Lahey’s No Knead Breads. The way he described his experience creating this Coconut-Chocolate bread made my mouth water. He was trying to recapture his childhood passion for the coconut-chocolate combo in Mounds bars. I believe he succeeded. This bread melts in your mouth. I always loved that combination myself.
Makes: One 8-inch round loaf; 1 1/2 pounds
Adapted from: My Bread, The Revolutionary No-Work, No-Knead Method by Jim Lahey
- 280 g (2 cups plus 2 T) bread flour
- 100 g (2 cups loosely packed) unsweetened shredded coconut
- 150 g (1 cup) semisweet chocolate morsels
- 4 g (3/4 teaspoon) salt
- 1 g (1/4 teaspoon) instant yeast
- 280 g (1 1/4 cups) cool (55 to 65 degrees F) water
- bran or additional flour for dusting (I used spelt bran that I froze when I milled and sifted the spelt flour for Sprouted Spelt Bread)
Stir together the flour, half of the coconut, the chocolate, salt, and yeast in a mixing bowl. Add the water and using a Danish dough whisk, mix until you have a wet, sticky dough. This will take about 30 seconds. Cover and let it sit at room temperature until the dough is more than doubled in size, about 12 to 18 hours.
After the first rise, dust a work surface with bran or flour. Scrape the dough out of the bowl in one piece. Lift the edges of the dough in toward the center. You can use a spatula or floured hands for this part. Tuck in the edges of the dough to make it round.
Place a kitchen towel (not terry cloth) on your work surface and dust it generously with bran (I used Spelt bran), then sprinkle it with 1/2 cup of the remaining coconut. I barely used 1/4 cup of coconut for this part.
Gently place the dough on the towel, seam side down. Lightly sprinkle the surface with the remaining 1/2 coconut. I only ended up using about 1/4 cup for this part as well since I used shredded coconut, not the large flakes.
Fold the ends of the towel loosely over the dough to cover it and place it in a warm, draft-free spot to rise for 1 to 2 hours. The dough will be ready when it is almost double in size. You can poke it with your finger to test. When it holds the impression, it is ready. If it springs back, let it rise another 15 minutes or so.
One-half hour before the end of the second rise, preheat the oven to 475 degrees F, with a rack in the lower third of the oven. Place a covered 4 1/2 to 5 1/2-quart heavy pot in the center of the rack. I used my new Bread Dome to bake this bread.
Carefully remove the preheated pot from the oven and uncover it. Unfold the towel and quickly but gently invert the dough into the pot, seam side up. Be careful! The pot will be very hot!
Place the cover on the pot and bake the bread for 40 minutes. Remove the lid and continue baking until the bread is a deep chestnut color but not burnt, about 20 to 25 minutes more. It didn’t take my bread this long before it turned chestnut. I think I baked it a total of 40 minutes. As you can see the coconut will burn so be careful!
Use a heatproof spatula or pot holder to carefully lift the bread out of the pot and place it on a rack to cool thoroughly.
I took this bread to a get together last night and it was received very well as you can imagine. It is divine! This is the best chocolate bread I’ve ever made. It is actually sweet. It is bread, but it could pass as a dessert in my opinion.
I especially enjoy baking bread on the weekends and allowing the dough to slow ferment to bring out the flavor and nutritional properties of the bread.
Over the years, I've become enamored with grains.So you'll find me experimenting using different types of heritage and ancients grains.Sometimes it works; sometimes it doesn't, but it's all part of the experience.I invite you to join me on this bread-baking journey.
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