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French Bread Recipe


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     French Bread

Category   Desserts - Breads
Sub Category   None

1/4 c warm water (105 to 110 degree water will work the very best)
1 Tbsp. yeast
1 Tbsp. sugar
1 c warm water
1 1/2 Tsp. salt
3 Tbsp. oil
1/3 to 1/2 c sugar (depending on how sweet you want the bread)
3 1/2 to 4 c flour
flour for rolling out dough

I do this in my kitchen aid mixer, so I proof the yeast right in that bowl. Use 1/4 c warm water, 105 to 110 degree water will work the very best. Dissolve 1 Tbsp sugar in the water. Sprinkle 1 Tbsp. yeast on top of the water. Let it sit for about 5 minutes until it is foamy, or proofed.
Let it sit for about 5 minutes until it is foamy, or proofed. Then you add 1 cup warm water 1 1/2 tsp. salt 3 Tbsp. oil 1/3 cup sugar Mix a little with your dough hook, then start adding in 3 1/2 to 4 cups of flour Start with 3 1/2 and add more if it isn't stiff enough. Dough should form into a ball after mixing with the dough hook for a couple minutes, but it should be very sticky to the touch. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface. With floured hands roll it into a long loaf. You are not incorporating or kneading in more flour, just forming a loaf. Now dust off excess flour and transfer it onto a sheet pan.
Then you should make 1/4 inch deep cuts in your bread, to allow it to rise more easily. Now cover it with a clean dish towel, so it won't get crusty, and walk away. Let it rise for 2-3 hours or longer for fluffier bread. 80 degrees is ideal, but I just put it under a warm window.
Bake it in a 400 degree oven for 17 to 20 minutes. It should be nice and brown, or it won't be cooked all the way through. Right after you take it out of the oven, rub butter on the crust to make it soft and yummy. It will quickly soak in.

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