Crusty French Loaf
A delicate texture makes this bread absolutely wonderful. I sometimes use the dough to make breadsticks, which I brush with melted butter and sprinkle with garlic powder.
Double the recipe - shape into a loaf and wrap with plastic wrap. Freeze. To cook, remove plastic wrap and thaw completely to let it rise. Bake as directed.
Prep Time: 20 min + 1 1/2 hour rising time
Cook Time: 30 min
|1 package||(1/4 ounce) active dry yeast|
|1 cup||warm water (110° to 115°)|
|2 tablespoons||canola oil|
|1 1/2 teaspoons||sea salt|
|3 to 3 1/4 cups||all-purpose flour|
|1 teaspoon||cold water|
In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the sugar, oil, salt and 2 cups flour. Beat until blended. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a stiff dough.
Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour. Punch dough down; return to bowl. Cover and let rise for 30 minutes.
Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface. Shape into a 16-in. x 2-1/2-in. loaf with tapered ends. Sprinkle a greased baking sheet with cornmeal; place loaf on baking sheet. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 25 minutes.
Beat egg white and cold water; brush over dough. With a sharp knife, make diagonal slashes 2 in. apart across top of loaf. Bake at 375° for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pan to a wire rack to cool. Yield: 1 loaf (16 slices).