Shortcut French Bread

Serves: 5
Total Calories: 326


cornmeal (optional)
2 packages yeast active dry
2 teaspoons sugar
1 1/2 cups water warm (105° to 115°)
4 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt


Generously grease a baking sheet and, if desired, sprinkle with cornmeal set aside.

In a large mixer bowl, dissolve yeast and 1 teaspoon of the sugar in 1/2 cup of the warm water let stand until foamy, 5 to 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, stir together 4 cups of the flour, salt, and remaining 1 teaspoon sugar.

Stir remaining water into yeast mixture. Beat 3 cups of the flour mixture into yeast mixture until smooth. Beat in remaining 1 cup flour mixture, 1/2 cup at a time, until a soft dough forms, using additional flour as needed.

On a lightly floured surface, knead just until no longer sticky. Shape into a narrow loaf, 18 inches long. Transfer to prepared baking sheet. Cut several diagonal slashes on top of loaf with a sharp knife. Cover and let rise in a warm place, free from drafts, until doubled, about 50 minutes.

Place a shallow pan of boiling water on lowest rack of a preheated 450° oven. Bake loaf on rack just above water for 10 minutes reduce heat to 400° and mist loaf with water. Bake 13 to 15 minutes longer until golden brown and bread sounds hollow when tapped. Transfer bread to a wire rack to cool.

Note: If desired, divide dough in half and shape into narrow loaves, 8 to 10 inches long. Proceed as above.

Nutritional Facts:

Serves: 5
Total Calories: 326
Calories from Fat: 0

This Shortcut French Bread recipe is from the Flavors of America Cookbook. Download this Cookbook today.

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