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French Bread

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Posted By: PinkPetunias
Posted In:  Breads
Page Views:  1812 views
Preparation Time:  2 minutes
Cooking Time:  30 minutes
Course: breads
Cusine: north american

Ingredients

1 1/2 tablespoons active dry yeast (2 packages)
2 1/2 cups lukewarm water
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon butter, melted
6-7 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cornmeal

Option for a shiny, deeper brown crust:
1 egg white
1 tablespoon cold water

Directions

  1. Dissolve yeast in warm water in warmed mixer bowl.
  2. Add salt, butter, and flour.
  3. Attach bowl & dough hook to mixer, turn to Speed 2 and mix about 1 minute or until well blended.
  4. Knead on Speed 2 about another 2 minutes longer. Note: you want the dough to be sticky.
  5. Put dough in large greased bowl, turning to coat.
  6. Cover with damp towel or plastic wrap sprayed with oil and let rise in warm place, free from draft, about 1 hour, or until doubled in bulk.
  7. Punch dough down and divide in half.
  8. Roll each half into 12" x 15" rectangle.
  9. Roll dough tightly, from longest side, tapering ends, if needed/wanted.
  10. Put loaves on greased baking sheets that have been dusted with cornmeal.
  11. Cover and let rise in warm place, free from draft, about 1 hour, or until doubled in bulk.
  12. With sharp knife, make 4 diagonal cuts on top of each loaf.
  13. Bake at 450 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. 
    OPTIONAL STEPS: Bake at 450 degrees for 25 minutes, remove from oven. Beat egg white and water together and brush each loaf with this mix. Return to the oven and bake 5 minutes longer.
  14. Immediately remove from baking sheets and cool on wire racks.

Enjoy!
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