French Bread

French Bread

Homemade French Bread will make any meal better. Admittedly, making bread from scratch requires a bit of time and effort. When I do make homemade bread I think of it as an event. It makes me feel like I’m at my grandmother’s house. I always plan a meal that goes well with my homemade French bread. Today, I am making homemade chicken soup and Chicken Ala King.

Ingredients

Yields 2 loaves

  • 2 cups warm water
  • tablespoon yeast
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 5 – 5 1⁄2 cups bread flour

Directions

  • Dissolve yeast in warm water (110 degrees) and sugar in large bowl; allow yeast to proof or foam (about 10 minutes).
  • Add salt, oil, and 3 cups flour; beat for 2 minutes.
  • Stir in 2 cups flour to make a stiff dough.
  • Knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes.
  • Place in oiled bowl, turn dough to coat all sides, cover and let rise until doubled.
  • Punch down and divide in half.
  • Shape dough into two long slender loaves.
  • Grease and sprinkle with cornmeal either a french bread pan or large cookie sheet.
  • Place loaves in pan and cut diagonal gashes on top of each loaf with either a sharp knife or scissors.
  • Cover and let rise until doubled.
  • Bake at 375 degrees for about 30 minutes.
    Note: To create a really crunchy crust, sprinkle or spray water on the loaves during baking.
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