Wanna Be Baguette Française

I’ve noticed that usually the French recipes are extremely long in size.  A lot of steps to do, until you’ll get the desired result. I never noticed this in the American or Romanian recipes.

I’m making this bread over a half of year already. I’m in loved with my bread machine and of course, I’m usually baking at home my bread. Mostly, it’s just a simple bread or bread with seeds, but when I have the time, I make with love french baguettes. I’m not very skilled into the kneading of dough, and to be honest I don’t really like this. Is getting messy the kitchen, and you must to “work” a bit longer to have the dough knead well. Nowadays the bread machine is a really miracle, and by having, I’m avoiding really hard to get to sticky with the “raw” dough.

The french bread is really good, has a specific taste, crispy crust, and not very hard to make. Even my boyfriend likes to making it, and it so good when you can eat homemade bread, slightly warm, with salted french butter or favorite vegetables dip.

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Ingredients for French preferment (leaven) :

– 100 g flour
– 100 ml water
– 1/3 teaspoon of dry yeast

Ingredients for 4 medium french baguettes :

– preferment aged on the counter overnight (quantities as above)
– 750 g flour
– 410 ml water
– 2 teaspoons of dry yeast
– 1 teaspoon of salt

Directions :

Start by making your leaven. Mix all ingredients and then allow to sit, covered, on the counter overnight. If you do this, be sure that the bowl is large enough to contain the expanded preferment (it may overflow the bowl).

Second day, start to prepare the actual baguettes. Using the bread machine, mix the flour, salt, water, yeast and preferment. Use a programme that is mixing and kneading your dough. You should get a firm, slightly sticky, dough.  Let it rest until doubled in size, around 1 hour and 30 minutes.

Remove the dough from the bowl’s machine and on a floured surface knead shortly the dough. Divide then, the dough into 4 medium portions and let it rest for 15 minutes, covered with a wet towel. Then, roll it and shape it into baguettes.

Line a long parchment paper into the pan. Put the baguettes into the pan and use the parchment paper to separate the breads. Let the baguettes rest under a wet towel for 45 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 200°C. Put a pan filled with hot water on the lowest level of the oven and let it steam for 10 minutes (it will help you to get that crispy crust). Then add the pan containing the baguettes. Bake for 15 minutes, or until done.