By PCrocker on October 07, 2004
Photo by Sue Lau
Photo by Sue Lau
"This recipe produces two crusty and chewy loaves that are so very good and so much better than store bought."
Serving Size: 1 (1150 g)
Servings Per Recipe: 1
"this rating is for the ingredients only. i used a different technique (from epicurious.com) to make sure it was crusty. first, i made the dough in my bread machine. then, i divided the dough into 2 lumps. i pressed each out into a rectangle and then rolled it up lengthwise to make 2 baguettes. i placed each on a cornmeal lined silpat mat on cookie sheets and basted with olive oil. i let loaves rise, uncovered, in a warm draft-free place 30 minutes.
then i put oven racks in upper third of oven, and put a large roasting pan with 1 inch of water in it on the bottom of the oven. preheat oven to 450°F. the high heat definitely gives it a crunchy exterior.
i made 3 shallow diagonal slashes down length of each loaf with razor. bake loaves 30 minutes, but watch closely b/c my top loaf ended up getting a little too dark, so maybe check at 20 mins. and bake until it sounds hollow. i did see another recipe on this site that called for baking the first 15 mins. and then 350 for the remainder, which i will try another time. i prefer this method to misting b/c it still gives me the crunchy crust w/o all the hassle."
"You can't get simpler and best taste anywhere else! This is the go to bread recipe. After reading many reviews with people having trouble getting the crust real crunchy.. I sprayed mine with olive oil and water mixture. and raised my rack as suggested by another reviewer. Worked like a charm. Thanks for posting this awesome recipe PCrocker!"
"Outstanding bread recipe and very easy to follow. I used the kitchenaid to knead th e dough. I used a perforated french bread baguette pan. And I halved the recipe ( one loaf). This took about 25 minutes to bake . Thanks PCrocker - i will make this one again!"
"I have just noticed that I've been making this recipe since January 2009 and I haven't done a review yet! This is the best french bread my husband and I have ever had. We no longer buy store-made when we want simple and fresh bread. The time it takes for the dough to rise can be quite long, but if you can put the dough together quickly, you can do other chores in the meantime. What I do differently is I make a single loaf instead of two and I add a tablespoon of vital wheat gluten to each cup of flour. This is amazing stuff because it makes the dough very elastic and the bread is so moist at the end. I highly recommend using this especially if you use whole wheat flour, which I do sometimes. And instead of using water on the crust in the last few minutes of baking, try basting on some olive oil. It makes for a sweet, crunchy crust that smells wonderful. My husband and I adore this bread!"
"Very good recipe - I used all the ingredients and followed the directions that were pretty amazing, but I made a few changes:
1. I put a pan of water on the second rack and I threw in 2 large ice cubes straight on the bottom of the inside of the oven right after putting the bread into the oven to help in creating immediate steam to assist in getting the bread crusty.
2. I preheated the oven to 400 degrees and after it baked at that temperature for 10 minutes, I lowed the heat to 375 degrees."
"This is the best French bread ever! Especially for a mom who has four growing kids. I make this bread in mini loaves. When they cool, I cut them in half, top with a little garlic butter, pizza sauce and various pizza toppings and shredded cheese, and freeze. Then when my kids, especially the older boys, are hungry, they just pop them in the microwave or toaster oven and voila, a perfect, and pretty healthy snack. I'll double this recipe and make about 8 - half loaves which give me 16 pizza's. Enough to last my household 2-3 weeks!"
"I followed the instruction exactly except I used 5 instead of 5 1/2 cups of flour as suggested by another reviewer. The bread came up beautifully. Thank you very much for sharing the recipe."
"This was amazing and easy! Everyone in my house loved it. I baked it for 25 minutes at 350, then brushed with olive oil and baked 5 minutes more. I served it with olive oil sprinkled with herbs. Can't wait to make again."
"I used this bread to soak up all the lovely juices from a big pot of mussells I had made. Excellent bread. My crust didn't come out as crusty as I thought it would, so next time, I will spray my oven a couple of times with water and that should achieve the results I want. Thanks for the posting!!"
"Delicious bread! I made a half recipe and used the breadmaker to make the dough. I baked and then made into garlic bread. It made a nice light bread with chewy crust. Will make again!"
"I made this bread twice in a 3 day period. The first was a total flop! Yeast is not normally my friend and the first loaf was no exception. I did everything possible wrong. I used the lower of the 2 amounts of flour and made half the recipe. I used quick rise yeast and that sucker was crawling out of the bowl at the end of an hour. I didn't need to punch it down because it collapsed as soon as I breathed on it. I carried on, shaped it and let it rise for another hour but could not slash it because it was too wet. It baked up looking like a canoe. :( It was very tasty though so after checking in with the folks in the Bread and Baking forum I increased the flour to the higher amount (again half a recipe), let it double which took only 30 mins with the quick rise yeast, knocked it down, shaped it and let it go for only 30 minute before baking. AWESOME results this time. I'll be making this often!"
"First I will say, the aroma in the house beats bringing any store-bought bread home. The recipe was quick to put together ( used the suggestion of "kneading" in the Kitchen Aid). Also, note that 1 packet of yeast is about 3/4 T. Short of what the recipe calls for (perhaps the attribute to other's loaves not rising). I used another reviewer's suggestion to preheat the oven to 450 with a pan of hot water in the bottom, lowered temp to 375 upon placing in the oven & baked for about 20-25 minutes, then brushed with olive oil & water emulsion for the last 5 minutes & sprinkled with sea salt util baked to a golden brown. Perfect accompaniment to Rachael Ray's French onion soup! Thanks for sharing, will be making this one again for sure."
"Great... nothing needs to be added? Thanks!"
"omg. I just made this this after noon, and I had to stop myself from eating it all! Haha! This recipe is definitely a keeper"
"This bread was easy and delicious! I followed the recipe to the letter - except that I thought I had corn meal, but didn't - so I just greased a cookie sheet and put the loaves directly on it. They stuck just a small bit on the edges but came right off with some spatula work. I will definitely be making this again and again. It was a great companion to my crock pot pork roast."
"Followed recipe exactly....made 10 rolls....preheated oven to 450 with a pan of water and then reduced heat and baked at 375 until golden."
"I tried this to make bread for the first time in my life with great success. I did a couple of things differently. I divided dough into thirds instead of half and used a pinch and fold technique to form baguettes. I egg washed the loaves before cooking in the top of the oven and sprayed with water during first half of baking. I baked longer to allow more browning. Good stuff....Thx."
"I didn't have bread flour or gluten and used AP. I shaped into rolls for french dip sandwiches. Sprayed with water and canola oil and near the end of the baking process I didn't feel the rolls were browning as well as I wanted and brushed with egg.<br/><br/> The rolls held up well for french dips and they were crusty. Entire family loved them. I will be making these again. Perfect. Thank you for sharing a great recipe!"
"My first time making bread, couldn't have picked a better place to start. Forgot to put the sugar in with the yeast, but ended up putting all ingredients in a bread maker to form the dough. End result was a lovely, crusty, dense and flavourful bread that I served hot with butter to go with Recipe 471979 This recipe will certainly be a keeper."
"I make this bread at least two times a week. My family LOVES IT!<br/>Makes amazing garlic bread once finished...<br/>YUMMM from all the family members here!"