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Crusty French Bread
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1 (1/4-ounce) package active dry yeast

2 1/4 cups warm water , 105°F to 115°F

1 tablespoon sugar

5 to 5 1/2 cups bread flour or all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon salt

1 large Land O Lakes® Egg, slightly beaten

1 tablespoon milk

How to make

  1. STEP 1

    Dissolve yeast in warm water in bowl; stir in sugar. Let stand 4-5 minutes. Stir in 3 cups flour and salt; beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to make dough easy to handle.

  2. STEP 2

    Turn dough onto lightly floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Place into greased bowl; turn greased-side up. Cover; let rise in warm place 1 1/2 hours or until double in size. (Dough is ready if indentation remains when touched.)

  3. STEP 3

    Punch down dough; divide into thirds. Shape each third into 15-inch loaf (baguette) or 5-inch round on greased baking sheets. Cover; let rise 30 minutes or until double in size.

  4. STEP 4

    Heat oven to 400°F.

  5. STEP 5

    Stir together egg and milk in bowl; brush over top and sides of loaves. Make 5 diagonal slashes across top of each loaf with serrated knife. Bake 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from baking sheets; cool on wire racks.

Tip #1

Variation: Garlic Herb French Bread: Add 1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves, 1 teaspoon dried basil leaves and 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh garlic with the 3 cups flour.

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