The Very Best Italian Bread!

Total Time
1hr 10mins
Prep 30 mins
Cook 40 mins

My friend Leslie passed this recipe on to me. It makes 2 loaves, which is always wonderful because you can share a fresh baked loaf of wonderful bread with a friend. Easy to make using both your bread machine and your oven.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Place flour, brown sugar, warm water, salt, olive oil and yeast in the pan of the bread machine in the order recommended by the manufacturer.
  2. Select dough cycle; press Start.
  3. Punch down the dough and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface.
  4. Form dough into two loaves.
  5. Place the loaves seam side down on a cutting board generously sprinkled with cornmeal.
  6. Cover the loaves with a damp cloth and let rise, until doubled in volume about 40 minutes.
  7. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  8. In a small bowl, beat together egg and 1 tablespoon water.
  9. Brush the risen loaves with egg mixture.
  10. Make a single long, quick cut down the center of the loaves with a sharp knife.
  11. Gently shake the cutting board to make sure that the loaves are not sticking.
  12. If they stick, use a spatula or pastry knife to loosen.
  13. Slide the loaves onto a baking sheet with one quick but careful motion.
  14. Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until loaves sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.


Most Helpful

This is the best Italian Bread. I will never buy another loaf in the store. Easy and delicious, thanks for posting.

Joe's Chef March 21, 2011

My oh my this is some great bread! I made it to have with some homemade soup for dinner. Great heated in the oven then slathered with butter!

BluEyedCookette February 20, 2011

I made this last night and it came out AMAZINGLY! I don't have a bread maker so I made it by hand and used quick-rise yeast. I made one loaf of bread with sesame seeds on top (sprinkled on after the egg wash) and then I made breadsticks with the rest! The breadsticks were long and narrow; before cooking I brushed with the egg-wash and sprinkled with kosher salt. Immediately when they came out of the oven, I brushed them again but this time with melted butter - it tasted wonderful! I'll add the pictures.

shalalala September 30, 2010

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