French Baguettes

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READY IN: 40mins
Recipe by CHEF GRPA

Great eaten fresh from oven. Used to make sub sandwiches, etc.

Ingredients Nutrition

Directions

  1. 1. Place 1 cup water, bread flour, sugar, salt and yeast into bread machine pan in the order recommended by manufacturer. Select Dough cycle, and press Start.
  2. 2. When the cycle has completed, place dough in a greased bowl, turning to coat all sides. Cover, and let rise in a warm place for about 30 minutes, or until doubled in bulk. Dough is ready if indentation remains when touched.
  3. 3. Punch down dough. On a lightly floured surface, roll into a 16x12 inch rectangle. Cut dough in half, creating two 8x12 inch rectangles. Roll up each half of dough tightly, beginning at 12 inch side, pounding out any air bubbles as you go. Roll gently back and forth to taper end. Place 3 inches apart on a greased cookie sheet. Make deep diagonal slashes across loaves every 2 inches, or make one lengthwise slash on each loaf. Cover, and let rise in a warm place for 30 to 40 minutes, or until doubled in bulk.
  4. 4. Preheat oven to 375*F. Mix egg yolk with 1 tablespoon water; brush over tops of loaves.
  5. 5. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven, or until golden brown.
  6. My Note: I've learned over the years: Do NOT add the salt with the flour. Combine the flour with the yeast mixture and knead for 5-7 min (in mixer). Remove dough hook, cover work bowl and let sit 15 minutes. THEN, sprinkle salt evenly over the dough and knead again until the salt is well incorporated. Set aside in warm place (85°F) until doubled in size -- proceed with shaping dough as desired. For those who prefer a more crunchy crust, use only egg white for brushing the loaf - and throw 1/4 cup of water onto the bottom of the oven (avoid heating element if you have an electric oven) - immediately place the loaf in the oven and bake as directed -- the water will create steam and gives the bread a crispier crust. When I prefer a soft crust, I whisk a whole egg (not just the yolk). Also, bread is typically ready when an instant read thermometer inserted into the bread registers 190-200*F. For bread sticks omit brushing the dough with egg. Delicious!
  7. You definitely DO NOT need a bread machine for these. Simply combine the water, yeast, and sugar and allow to proof. Then add the salt, then flour and knead until no longer sticky. Place in an oiled bowl and allow to rise according to recipe instructions. I rolled my dough out and made 2 baguettes. I really think I'll make 3 baguettes next time because I use mine for sandwiches and they were a little too big. After baking, I cut the top off the whole length of the baguette so that the top looks like an upside down triangle (like they do at Subway). This leaves me with a bottom piece that is concave in the middle. I then put 2 pieces of provolone cheese and then top it with Chicken Salad. I put the filled bottom piece in the oven by itself for about 7 minutes. Then I put mayo on the top piece, and place it in the oven with the bottom piece, and I let it heat for about another 5 minutes or so. It's GREAT! The bread is slightly crusty on the outside, moist and soft on the inside -- a far cry from those chewy store-bought baguettes. For me: This one's a keeper for sure. Oh, and they freeze well, too.

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