1/3 Photos of French Baguette
12 hrs 30 mins
My Private Note
Units: US | Metric
- 1 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 2 cups lukewarm water (100-110 degrees)
- 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1Other equipment: unbleached all-purpose flour for kneading, sesame seeds (optional), cornmeal, tray of hot water, razor blade, sheetpan, parchment and Dough scraper.
- 2Starter Dough: In a small bowl, mix the yeast in the lukewarm water (do the baby's bottle test on your wrist) and make sure that it bubbles (about 10 minutes).
- 3In a bowl large enough for the starter dough to triple, transfer the yeast-water mixture, add the flour a half a cup at a time mixing it in well with a wooden spoon.
- 4When the ingredients have been thoroughly combined, the Starter Dough will be quite soupy.
- 5Let the Starter Dough rise, covered, in a no-draught spot on the counter (at room temperature) for 7 to 10 hours.
- 6Bread: To make the dough, add 1/2 cup of flour to the Starter Dough.
- 7Stir with a wooden spoon.
- 8Continue to add all but 1/2 cup of the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring all the time.
- 9(Note: To make a more rustic bread, use 1/2 c whole wheat flour and 1 1/2 c white flour).
- 10You don't have to add all the flour.
- 11You know it's enough when the dough comes away from the side of the bowl.
- 12It will still be quite sticky.
- 13Dust your board or counter with some of the last 1/2 c flour and then scrape the dough out of the bowl.
- 14Sprinkle salt over top.
- 15Use the extra flour to help you handle the wet dough.
- 16Using a dough scraper when the dough sticks to the surface, knead the dough for 10 to 15 minutes until it is smooth and silky (it should feel like your ear lobe when done).
- 17Scrape away any dough that is on the board.
- 18As you knead, add flour a very little at a time to stop it from sticking.
- 19The dough will still be quite loose.
- 20Put the dough in a lightly floured bowl.
- 21Cover with a damp towel and let rise in a no-draught place for 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
- 22When the dough has doubled, deflate the dough by pushing down on it with your fist and turn it out onto the board.
- 23Divide it in two equal pieces.
- 24Sprinkle or Sift a fine coating of flour on the work surface.
- 25Place one ball of dough on the surface and gently pat it down to an even thickness of 1 inch.
- 26Do not attempt to deflate every air bubble.
- 27Using the heels and palms of your hands, flatten the dough into a crude rectangle measuring about 1 inch thick.
- 28Fold the long side farthest from you a little over 2/3 of the way toward you.
- 29Using the heel of your hand, gently press the folded edge to seal the dough.
- 30Pick up the dough and turn it 180 degrees.
- 31Fold over the other long edge of the dough about 2/3 of the way, and seal with the palm of your hand.
- 32To make a compact cylinder easy to roll into a baguette shape, use both hands to fold the log in half lengthwise.
- 33This time, as you fold, press your thumbs gently inside the fold to create tension on the surface of the log.
- 34Using your fingertips, press the edges together to seal the dough into a taut cylinder.
- 35This will produce a visible seam running the length of the dough.
- 36To roll the dough into a baguette shape, place both hands on the center of the log with your fingers spread apart.
- 37Using light uniform pressure, gently roll the dough back and forth into a long snake.
- 38Taking care not to stretch the dough, move your hands from the center of the dough to the ends as the loaf begins to lengthen to about 14- 16 inches.
- 39If the dough resists rolling, let it rest for 5 minutes before continuing.
- 40Put the baguette seam side down on a baking pan that has cornmeal (or parchment) sprinkled on the bottom of the pan.
- 41Optional: Wet your hands well and rub the dough.
- 42Sprinkle sesame seeds over each baguette.
- 43Repeat forming process with the other piece of dough.
- 44Cover sheetpan with plastic wrap then a damp towel and let rise again to almost double (about 45 minutes).
- 45Thirty minutes before you are going to bake, turn oven to 500F and Put water into a broiling pan and place it on the bottom rack of the oven.
- 46Slash the top of the baguettes with a very sharp knife or razor blade horizontally across the loaf at a slight angle- make cuts at 2-3- inch intervals.
- 47Spray the baguettes liberally with water.
- 48Put bread in oven and immediately turn the oven down to 450F.
- 49Bake the bread on the second lowest rack for 30 minutes or until it is hollow sounding on the bottom.
- 50The bread will be done when the internal temperature reaches 200 degrees.
- 51Turn off the oven.
- 52leave the finished bread in the oven and leave with the door ajar for 5 or 10 minutes.
- 53Remove to cool on cooling racks.
- 54Wait until the bread is cool before cutting it.
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Nutritional Facts for French Baguette
Serving Size: 1 (989 g)
Servings Per Recipe: 1
- Amount Per Serving
- % Daily Value
- Calories 918.8
- Calories from Fat 23
- Total Fat 2.5 g
- Saturated Fat 0.4 g
- Cholesterol 0.0 mg
- Sodium 1755.3 mg
- Total Carbohydrate 191.9 g
- Dietary Fiber 7.3 g
- Sugars 0.6 g
- Protein 26.9 g