French Bread

Tested Recipe with Slight Adjustment Adapted from Jennie Shapter’s The Bread Machine Cookbook

French Bread 1

 

Ingredients: (makes 2-3 loaves)

1 1/3 cup water

4 cup bread flour

1 tsp salt

1 ½ tsp instant yeast

Preparation Instructions:

  1. In a small bowl, add in ¼ cup of water and instant yeast. Stir well and leave aside for 5 minutes.
  2. In a large bowl, add in the bread flour, salt and remaining water. Mix well and make a small well at the centre. Pour in the yeast mixture. Knead into a dough.
  3. Lay a silicone mat on a working surface. Continue to knead the dough until all ingredients come together.
  4. Transfer the dough into a bowl and leave the bowl in the cold oven for 1st round of proofing, about 45 minutes or until double in size.
  5. Transfer the dough on a silicone mat. Deflate and divide the dough into two or three equal portions.
  6. Shape each of dough into a ball, then roll out to a rectangle measuring 8×3 in. Fold one-third up lengthways and one-third down, then press. Repeat twice more, leaving dough to rest between foldings to avoid tearing.
  7. Gently roll and stretch each piece to a 11-13 in loaf, depending on whether you aim to make smaller or larger loaves onto a baking sheet.
  8. Leave in the cold oven for 30-45 minutes to have the 2nd round of proofing, until double in size.
  9. Preheat oven to 230C.
  10. Lightly brush the top with water and slash the tops several times with a knife.
  11. Place at the top of the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until golden. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
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