French Bread

Evie Davis

4 loaves (Use long tubular baking pans)

In large bowl put:

  • 2 T. sugar
  • 1 t. salt
  • 2 ½ cups warm water
  • 1 package of dry yeast

Stir until all is dissolved.  Add 3 cups flour and stir with whisk until thoroughly mixed.  Add additional 3 cups of flour and mix in with hands.  At this time you have a total of 6 cups in a big, stickey, gooey blob.

Have 1 cup of lour ready, sprinkle some on counter top and dump dough out on counter.  Knead for at least ten minutes, adding flour when necessary.  (Don’t worry if you don’t use all the flour or have to use some more.  It will still work out well.)

Grease the mixing bowl with shortening, put the dough in the bowl, turn it over and cover with a damp dishtowel.  Let rise in a warm place until it is double in size, about 1 ½ hours.

Punch the dough down and form it into a nice, smooth ball.  Cut it into four equal parts.  Using a rolling pin, roll the dough out into the shape of a long tongue, approximately the length of the bread pan.  Roll the dough jelly roll fashion very firmly and tightly.  Pinch the seam of the dough and place seamside down in the well-greased pan.  Slash the bread 4 or 5 times on the diagonal and brush with beaten egg white.  Place the pans back in a warm place and let the loaves raise until they FILL the pans, about an hour.  Preheat the oven to 450° and bake for 15 minutes.  Turn the oven down to 350° and continue baking for 25 to 30 minutes.

Remove the loaves from the oven and pop them out of the pans.  Lay the loaves across the pans so air can circulate around them while they are cooling.  This will make the crust crusty.

Wrap in foil to freeze.  When ready to serve, bake in 350° oven for 20 minutes, the frozen bread still in the foil.

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