Wonderful Italian bread made in a bread machine then baked in the oven.

Recipe Summary

prep:
20 mins
cook:
35 mins
additional:
2 hrs 25 mins
total:
3 hrs 20 mins
Servings:
20
Yield:
2 - 1 pound loaves
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Ingredients

20
Original recipe yields 20 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Place flour, brown sugar, warm water, salt, olive oil and yeast in the pan of the bread machine in the order recommended by the manufacturer. Select dough cycle; press Start.

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  • Deflate the dough and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Form dough into two loaves. Place the loaves seam side down on a cutting board generously sprinkled with cornmeal. Cover the loaves with a damp cloth and let rise, until doubled in volume about 40 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).

  • In a small bowl, beat together egg and 1 tablespoon water. Brush the risen loaves with egg mixture. Make a single long, quick cut down the center of the loaves with a sharp knife. Gently shake the cutting board to make sure that the loaves are not sticking. If they stick, use a spatula or pastry knife to loosen. Slide the loaves onto a baking sheet with one quick but careful motion.

  • Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until loaves sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.

Nutrition Facts

105 calories; protein 3.1g 6% DV; carbohydrates 20.6g 7% DV; fat 0.9g 1% DV; cholesterol 9.3mg 3% DV; sodium 178.9mg 7% DV. Full Nutrition
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Reviews (617)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
01/10/2007
I was intrigued by all the positive feedback on this recipe. It WAS excellent. I took in some of the suggestions: I cut the salt to 1 tsp, I let the bread rise on my parchment covered stoneware sheet, I did brush the top with the egg wash and I did cut the bread lengthwise. I didn't have any cornmeal so I skipped that. The parchment prevented any sticking. I also put the pan of ice cubes in the bottom while baking. I used all bread flour and it was fine. I may try it in a loaf (in a loaf pan) and use the half bread flour/half AP flour option and see how that turns out. Has anyone ever tried this in a loaf pan? The crust is superb; nice and chewy and the middle was nice and soft. I did let the bread rise about ten minutes longer than the recipe called for, as it looked a bit on the skinny side at 40 minutes. I am a microbiologist by trade. Yeasts are living organisms. They respond to moisture and, more importantly, temperature. If it's cold, your yeast just isn't going to rise as fast as you'd like. There is an optimum temperature for all microorganisms. Since we work with human pathogens, and not commercial food organisms, I don't know the exact range that this would be. I do know that the extra ten minutes made all the difference in the rising for this bread. Read More
(479)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 3 stars
03/30/2011
The bread tasted fine. I was a little confused as to how long to keep the dough in the bread machine. The dough cycle 'punches down' the dough before the final raising time. This is when I took the dough out to form into loaves. Worked okay and looked pretty with the egg mixture. Read More
(16)
750 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 600
  • 4 star values: 102
  • 3 star values: 27
  • 2 star values: 12
  • 1 star values: 9
Rating: 5 stars
01/10/2007
I was intrigued by all the positive feedback on this recipe. It WAS excellent. I took in some of the suggestions: I cut the salt to 1 tsp, I let the bread rise on my parchment covered stoneware sheet, I did brush the top with the egg wash and I did cut the bread lengthwise. I didn't have any cornmeal so I skipped that. The parchment prevented any sticking. I also put the pan of ice cubes in the bottom while baking. I used all bread flour and it was fine. I may try it in a loaf (in a loaf pan) and use the half bread flour/half AP flour option and see how that turns out. Has anyone ever tried this in a loaf pan? The crust is superb; nice and chewy and the middle was nice and soft. I did let the bread rise about ten minutes longer than the recipe called for, as it looked a bit on the skinny side at 40 minutes. I am a microbiologist by trade. Yeasts are living organisms. They respond to moisture and, more importantly, temperature. If it's cold, your yeast just isn't going to rise as fast as you'd like. There is an optimum temperature for all microorganisms. Since we work with human pathogens, and not commercial food organisms, I don't know the exact range that this would be. I do know that the extra ten minutes made all the difference in the rising for this bread. Read More
(479)
Rating: 5 stars
01/03/2004
I got bigger loaves by letting the dough rise on the actual baking sheet. Moving the dough after rising caused it to fall and resulted in small loaves. Read More
(362)
Rating: 5 stars
01/03/2004
Can I give this six stars? What a great recipe-easy and yummy. I let the loaves rise on a pan with the cornmeal and then baked it without having to move it. There is a local Italian restaurant we go to for the bread. This was better than that. I used 2 cups bread flour and 2 cups all purpose flour. Read More
(221)
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Rating: 4 stars
01/06/2009
For those of you that use a jar of yeast instead of small packages. 1 package is equivalent to 2 and 1/4 tsps of yeast. Anyways great bread! Read More
(159)
Rating: 5 stars
06/05/2009
My family and I loved this bread, my husband is Italian and he loves bread. We go to a little local Italian shop where they make fresh bread and it is amazing, this recipe came very close to it. I have been on a bread making kick for the past 2 years and have all kinds of bread making books one even from Le Cordon Bleu and this recipe ranks right up there. The crust was chewy and golden, this bread is little dense but delicious, a perfect bread in my humble opinion. The only alteration I made was to only add 1tsp of salt. I would not make the whole recipe in the bread machine because it is a bit of a dense bread and it will turn out too heavy. This recipe is now one of favorites, thanks for sharing Destiny! a little tip how do you know when the bread has risen enough? The dough will double in size. It will be soft and look a bit airy. When you touch it with your finger, it will feel soft and an indention in the dough will remain. If it feels a bit springy and the dough bounces back from the indentation, it hasn’t risen enough. Read More
(127)
Rating: 5 stars
01/26/2004
I wasn't expecting so much from such a simple, easy recipe and boy was i delighted! It had just the right amount of sweet/crunch to it and what a pretty loaf it makes! i used bread flour instead of the all-purpose so shaping it was a breeze. i added some sesame seeds too. i also used parchment paper for baking to prevent sticking. Read More
(55)
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Rating: 5 stars
04/22/2004
I just LOVE this bread! The egg brushed on it right before baking makes it shiny and beautiful. When cutting the top of it b4 baking I tend to cut diagonally both ways rather than one cut down the middle; impressive look. 1 t. gluten/cup flour makes it even softer. My family and friends love this too!! Read More
(45)
Rating: 5 stars
03/23/2010
OMG! This bread is sooo good it disappeared right off the table in no time. I tweaked it a bit after reading some reviews. I used my bread machine to make the dough and my oven to bake it. First, I put in warm water and yeast and let it stand for 10 min. This activates the yeast. Then I added all the ingrediants, making sure to add the salt last (on top). I used half All-Purpose flour and half Bread flour. I also reduced the salt to a rounded tsp. I set my bread machine for the rapid french coarse. This worked better than the dough setting which only allows one rise. I set a timer to remind me to take it out before the machine started baking. This gave the dough more needing and rising cycles. As many have suggested, I divided and shaped the dough and let it rise on the baking stone or pan (because transfering your dough can possibly make it flatten) which I covered with parchment paper and a sprinkling of cornmeal. You know the dough is ready to bake when it is soft and leaves an indentation when gently poked. If the indentation fills back in let it rise some more. Rise range 40-60min. I applied the egg solution using a paper towel softly brushing the dough. I think this is better than using a stiff brush because the dough can easily flatten. I pre-heated my oven to 400 and when I was ready to put in the bread I turned it down to 375. I didn't use the water or ice cube at the bottom of the oven as some have suggested (I forgot). But my crust came out crispy, flaky, perfect! Read More
(36)
Rating: 5 stars
06/20/2003
Excellent and easy!!!! Why buy it anymore Made it several times `` Will never buy italian bread again Read More
(31)
Rating: 3 stars
03/30/2011
The bread tasted fine. I was a little confused as to how long to keep the dough in the bread machine. The dough cycle 'punches down' the dough before the final raising time. This is when I took the dough out to form into loaves. Worked okay and looked pretty with the egg mixture. Read More
(16)
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