Mock Sourdough French Bread

READY IN: 2hrs 30mins
Recipe by Toby Jermain

I found the original version of this recipe in the Betty Crocker Bread Cookbook about 25-30 years ago and have pretty much given up on making my own sourdough, since this is a good as all but the very best sourdough breads around. Cooking time includes rising time.

Top Review by ScrumptiousWY

Really good! I was skeptical because I've tried other mock sourdough recipes using sour cream, vinegar, yogurt, you name it...but none ever tasted very sour. This recipe uses much more yogurt than previous ones I'd tried and you can taste the difference. It's still not SUPER-sour like the kind you get in San Fransisco (hence 4 stars instead of 5), but VERY good for a "mock" version & so much easier than traditional methods. I added 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice concentrate for additional tang, and will probably double that next time as it didn't seem to hurt the rising. Fabulous crunchy crust and nice soft yet sturdy inner texture. Reheat leftovers in a 300 degree oven for 10 minutes or so to re-create the fresh baked flavor & crisp crust. Definitely a keeper!

Ingredients Nutrition

Directions

  1. Heat yogurt to lukewarm (110 degrees F).
  2. In a large mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water, stir in yogurt, sugar, salt, oil and 2 cups flour, and beat until smooth.
  3. Stir in enough additional flour to make dough easy to handle.
  4. Knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes, adding more flour as necessary, to obtain a firm, non-sticky sough.
  5. Place in oiled bowl, and turn to oil top of dough.
  6. Cover, and let rise in warm place until doubled in volume.
  7. Punch down dough, divide into 8 equal parts, knead each one, and flatten into a 4"x6" rectangle.
  8. Roll up, beginning on one of the long sides, excluding any air bubbles.
  9. Pinch edge of dough firmly into roll to seal, press each end firmly to seal, and fold ends under.
  10. Place loaves, seam side down, on greased cookie sheets sprinkled with cornmeal.
  11. Brush or spray tops with cold water, and cut three diagonal slices across top of each loaf with a sharp knife or razor blade.
  12. Let rise until doubled, about 30-40 minutes.
  13. Heat oven to 375 degrees F.
  14. Brush or spray loaves with cold water, and sprinkle pepper into slashes if desired.
  15. Bake until loaves sound hollow when rapped on the bottom or when they reach an internal temperature of 190 degrees F on an instant reading thermometer, about 35 minutes, brushing or spraying with cold water every 10 minutes.
  16. Cool on wire rack before wrapping.
  17. Recipe can be doubled successfully, and bread freezes very well.
  18. Thaw to room temperature and heat unwrapped in oven to restore the crisp crust.

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