I have wanted to try making baguettes for two years now. For some reason I thought it would be very hard to do. There are probably some methods that are very hard, but the one I [finally] tried sure wasn’t! Keeps me wondering WHY I waited two years to get around to trying it?! 🙂
This recipe makes 3 baguettes and oh, were they ever good!!! I ate some for mid-morning snack…. lunch…. mid-afternoon snack…. supper…. and evening snack. A little too much bread maybe, but it was just that yummy. 😉
The recipe is an adaptation from Famous French Desserts’ website.
4 cups Flour (I used 1/2 spelt, 1/2 white flour)
1 tbsp instant yeast
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 cups warm water
Oil for bowl
In a large bowl combine water, salt, and 2 cups flour. Stir in 2 cups of remaining flour until mixture forms a stiff dough.
On a lightly floured surface knead dough with lightly floured hands 8 minutes, or until smooth and elastic. Add more flour if needed to keep dough from being too sticky.
Transfer dough to a lightly oiled deep bowl, turning to coat with oil, and let rise, bowl covered with plastic wrap, until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 450° F.
Punch down dough and form into long 2-3 slender loaves. Put loaves on a lightly greased large baking sheet and let rise, uncovered, about 20 minutes. (Baguette may be made up to this point 4 hours ahead and chilled.)
Make 3 or 4 diagonal slashes on loaf with a sharp knife. Place a bowl of boiling water in oven*, in bottom rack. Bake loaves in middle of oven about 20 minutes, or until golden, and transfer to a rack to cool.
*After placing the loaves in the oven, quickly pour a cup of boiling water in a metal dish in the rack under the bread.