I wanted to tell you about the baguette recipe that I found in my Southern Living Cookbook - a treasure I wouldn't have found if still just 'Googling' recipes.
I'm enjoying going through my cookbooks, something I pretty much stopped doing with the Internet in the house. Oh the Internet - how I miss thee. At times. And other times, I'm so glad I do not have you to distract me. I've been riding the 'Bi-Polar Express' (thank you Nancy S!) over the whole thing. I've had the phone in my hand twice dialing AT & T.
Back to the bread.
I'm always looking for a good bread that will last more than two days without turning into croutons, or breaking any molars.
This bread was super tasty, and fit the bill. Made great sandwiches.
Easy peasy to make -
I can't remember the last time I 'bought' bread.
I'm going to play with this recipe, adding different spices, finely chopped sun dried tomatoes, etc.
I can't encourage you enough to start making bread.
Like anything worth doing, it takes a bit of practice, and may seem overwhelming if you've never done it.
Seriously - there is only about 12 minutes of 'hands on time' here.
You CAN do this!
Here's the recipe:
1 3/4 cup of water
1 T butter
3 3/4 to 4 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 pks yeast (or 4.5 teaspoons of instant yeast)
1 T sugar
1 T garlic powder
2 t salt
1 t pepper
1 t thyme
1 T cornmeal
egg white beaten with a little water
Melt the tablespoon of butter into water on stove top in a small saucepan. Keep an eye on it - you don't want to boil it - just warm it.
Mix 1 1/2 cups of the flour with the next six ingredients, you can just stir it with a spoon, or use your mixer. I prefer to do it with a spoon, cause I enjoy the hands on work of bread making.
Keep adding flour, a cup at a time until the dough forms a ball, dump it on on a well floured counter and knead away. Keep adding flour if the dough feels sticky.
Do you know about the baker's window?
It's truly the key to success.
You MUST knead your dough until you get a 'baker's window'.
Click here to find out how...
Once you've achieved your baker's window, throw a dishtowel over the dough and let it rest 20 minutes.
Divide the dough in half, and roll out each portion into a 10 x 15 rectangle.
Roll up each rectangle tightly lengthwise.
Put on greased baking sheet sprinkled with cornmeal.
Cover with plastic wrap and put in fridge for 2 hours.
(this makes a nice slow rise and a nice fine crumb)
Take the dough out of the fridge whilst the oven is preheating to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
Slash the loaves.
Bake the lovely loaves for 20 minutes - brush with egg white mixture, and bake another 5 minutes.
I'm a Pink Chicken, and I approve this blog post.