Real Recipes From Real Home Cooks ®

french bread

Recipe by
Amy H.
Detroit, MI

Did you know that according to a legend, it was allegedly Napoleon who asked for the baguette to have a long shape? This is because it made it easier for his soldiers to carry their bread around down their pants while in the battlefield!

yield 12 serving(s)
prep time 1 Hr 30 Min
cook time 40 Min
method Bake

Ingredients For french bread

  • 3 c
    bread flour
  • 2 1/4 Tbsp
    dried jarred yeast (or 1 packet)
  • 1 tsp
  • 1 c
    warm water (120 degrees)
  • 1 c
    cold water
  • cornmeal
  • 1
    slightly beaten egg white
  • 1 Tbsp

How To Make french bread

  • 1
    In a mixing bowl, with a wire whisk, stir together 1 cups of the bread flour, the yeast, and salt.
  • 2
    Add warm water to the mixing bowl and beat with an electric mixer on low to medium speed for 30 seconds, scraping the sides of the bowl constantly.
  • 3
    Increase speed to high and continue to beat for 3 minutes.
  • 4
    Using a large spoon, stir remaining flour and 1 cup cold water.
  • 5
    Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface. Knead for 8-10 minutes, adding flour a little at a time to make a stiff dough until smooth and elastic.
  • 6
    Shape the dough into a small ball and place in a lightly greased bowl, turning to coat the whole ball. Cover loosely and let rise in a warm location about an hour or until doubled in size.
  • 7
    Punch dough down and turn onto a lightly floured surfface. Cover with damp cloth again and let the dough rest for 10-15 minutes
  • 8
    Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  • 9
    In the meantime, spray a 10x15 pan with nonstick cooking spray and sprinkle with a bit of cornmeal.
  • 10
    Roll dough into a 10x15 inch rectangle. Roll up jelly roll fashion, starting from long side. Cut into two loaves and seal ends and pull slightly to taper.
  • 11
    Place the rolls seam side down on the 10x15 inch prepared pan.
  • 12
    In a small bowl, beat together the egg white and tablespoon of water with a wire whisk until blended well. Brush the loaves with the egg white mixture.
  • 13
    Bake in oven for 20 minutes.
  • 14
    Brush again with more of the egg white mixture, continue to bake 15-20 minutes more. Remove bread from pan and cool on wire racks.