Introduction: French Bread
I'm 11 years old and a third generation bread baker. This is my Nana's recipe, she lives in Wyoming. I love to bake, ALL types of things and I want to write a book telling people not to be afraid of yeast. I am in fifth grade and love school. I really hope you enjoy my first instructable!
Step 1: Ingredients
3 cups of warm water about 105 degrees Fahrenheit or bath water temperature
2 tablespoons yeast
1 teaspoon salt
6-7 cups unbleached flour
1 egg separated (yolk and white)
1/4 cup sesame or poppy seeds
1-2 tablespoons of oil
A handful of ice cubes
Any type of whisk
cooling rack (or a cool spot)
Make sure to have a clean working space!
Makes 4 loaves or 24 small rolls
Step 2: Yeast (Don't Fear The)
Evenly spread the yeast on top of the warm water. Stir with something chopstick like. Wait for about 15 minutes for the yeast to proof, or until bubbly like the picture. If the water is too warm or too cool the yeast will die (not turn bubbly). DON'T GIVE UP, try again.
Step 3: It's Coming Together!
Pour the proofed yeast into the large bowl. Then stir in the egg yolk until uniform color. Now add three cups of flour. Beat really hard for about 1 minute or until fully mixed (by hand). After covering with top plastic wrap, let rise for 15 to 20 minutes.
Step 4: I Need to Knead You
Add flour until it comes together like the last picture, cup by cup, and the salt(stirring in between each cup). Stir until the dough comes together and you can hold it easily in your hands. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Lightly flour your hands. Knead until it's not sticky anymore, but smooth and stretchy, about 5 to 10 minutes. Coat the bottom of the large bowl with oil. Lift the dough into the bowl and spin it. Turn over your almost-bread so it too is covered with oil. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Also put in a baking tin on the bottom of the oven. Cover the top of the bowl and let rise for 30 minutes.
Step 5: Shape Up
Feel free to mix and match!
Directions For Loaves:
-Split dough into quadrants
-Trying not to overwork it, flatten into rectangles
-Roll up tightly and pinch all seams
-Place on greased or parchment paper lined cookie sheets long seam-side down
-Let rise for 1/2 an hour
Directions For Rolls:
-Cut dough in half, then each in fourths, then each in thirds
-You should have 24 pieces
-Either make mini loaves or be creative and somehow shape into a ball
-Let rise half an hour on parchment paper lined (or just greased) cookie sheets
Step 6: Into the Oven
Whip the egg white. Brush the egg white heavily onto the rolls and/or loaves. Incise the loaves by quickly moving the knife on the loaf. Make three cuts. Now sprinkle poppy seeds (or sesame seeds) on both the rolls and loaves. Remember the baking tin? Pop in a handful of ice cubes for steam. The steam will help create a better crust. Now slide the cookie sheets into the preheated oven. Bake for 1/2 an hour. Remove with oven mitts (and caution). Slide the bread onto the cooling rack and let cool for a couple minutes (or until you can't stand it any longer). CAUTION: Those who are impatient may burn their mouths!
Step 7: Yum
EAT! It freezes well and tastes great toasted the next morning! If you liked this please vote for it! My mom needs a baking stone because her other one broke :( The crust isn't as perfect without one. I had a lot of fun writing my first instructable! Thanks!