June 14, 2016

Simple French Bread

This is my go to French bread recipe. It's simple and easy to make. If you don't have a stand mixer you can use a hand mixer for mixing and knead the dough by hand. 
Makes 1 loaf

2 ¾-3 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 tbs sugar
1 package or 2 1/4 tsp 
active dry yeast
1 cup warm water (120 degrees F)

In a stand mixer, mix 2 cups flour with the salt, sugar, and yeast. Add water and beat for 3 minutes. Beat in enough additional flour to make a soft but kneadable dough.

Place dough on a floured surface and knead for 3-5 minutes, until smooth and elastic (you can use a dough hook on a mixer for this step if you have one). Place the dough in a bowl, cover with towel, and let rise for 45-60 minutes.

Punch dough down and roll into a long rectangular shape. Starting from the long end, roll the dough (like a cinnamon roll) into a loaf shape. Place seam-side down on a greased baking sheet, cover with a wet towel to let rise 30-45 minutes, or until doubled in size.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Make an egg wash by mixing one egg with one tablespoon of water. Brush loaf with the egg wash with a pastry brush. Using a sharp knife, make 3-4 diagonal slashes on top of the loaf.

Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown. Let cool on a wire rack. Enjoy!

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