My grandmother once told me “real cooks know how to bake bread”…sigh…As you can imagine this has become my life challenge. I can make a mean biscuit, but really other than that all my bread making skills are really new and not quite refined. French bread is our mission today, and I will go ahead and tell you the good and bad of this recipe. Good part is you can have homemade delicious bread in one hour from start to finish. Bad part is if you’re looking for that true crunchy almost break your teeth crust you will not find it here. When all is said and done this is a wonderfully simple recipe, great for beginner bread bakers like me. The possibilities for this little baguette are endless, bake it for homemade brushetta, for croutons, po boy sandwiches, mini grilled cheese, or be like me and just serve it covered in butter along side a hot bowl of soup. In fact I used this bread twice, I saved a small piece and ground it up in my blender for fresh breadcrumbs that I used in crab cakes last night. So if you’re not into baking bread I hope that you will maybe give this recipe a try, I promise it’s a lot easier than you might think….
from me two you,
3/4 C. warm water
1 pkg dried yeast
1 tsp sugar
2 1/8 C. flour
1 tsp salt
– mix warm water, yeast, and sugar. let stand for 5 minutes. (foam should form on top)
– in large mixing bowl combine flour and salt. gradually add yeast mixture. mix until dough becomes smooth ball.
– remove dough from bowl onto floured surface. knead bread for 5 minutes.
– lightly grease a cookie sheet. place dough on greased cookie sheet and shape into baguette.
– cover dough with kitchen towel, let rise for 30 minutes. (make sure you put the dough in a warm dry place while rising, i just leave my sitting on the kitchen counter)
– preheat oven to 450 degrees.
– uncover dough after 30 minutes, using a very sharp knife make a shallow cut, lengthwise, down the baguette.
– using a 9 x 9 square baking dish, fill this dish 1/2 way with water. place this water dish inside oven on the lowest rack. (this is going to create steam for our bread to bake in)
– place bread in center rack in oven and bake for 15 minutes. after 7 minutes of the cooking time, brush bread with 2 T. melted butter.
– let cool for 5 minutes before slicing. serve and enjoy.