Crusty French Bread
- Ready In:
- 2 cups warm water
- 1 tablespoon yeast
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 5 - 5 1⁄2 cups bread flour
- Dissolve yeast in warm water (110 degrees) and sugar in large bowl; allow yeast to proof or foam (about 10 minutes).
- Add salt, oil, and 3 cups flour; beat for 2 minutes.
- Stir in 2 cups flour to make a stiff dough.
- Knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes.
- Place in oiled bowl, turn dough to coat all sides, cover and let rise until doubled.
- Punch down and divide in half.
- Shape dough into two long slender loaves.
- Grease and sprinkle with cornmeal either a french bread pan or large cookie sheet.
- Place loaves in pan and cut diagonal gashes on top of each loaf (I use scissors).
- Cover and let rise until doubled.
- Bake at 375 degrees for about 30 minutes.
- Note: You can sprinkle or spray water on the loaves during baking if you want a really crunchy crust.
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