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How to Make French Baguettes

Rated as 4.66 out of 5 Stars
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"I always thought you can't make real French baguettes at home, but once I tried it I realized I was wrong. Again. You're going to be fairly shocked when you realize just how simple this is. The only way to make bread this any more French is to put some butter on it!"
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Ingredients

15 h 5 m servings 305
Original recipe yields 6 servings (2 large or 4 small baguettes)

Directions

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  1. Place yeast into the bottom of a large mixing bowl and stir with water; mix in salt. Beat flour into yeast mixture with a wooden spoon until dough is thick and sticky and pulls flour from the side of the bowl, 5 to 10 minutes.
  2. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let stand in a turned-off oven until doubled in size, 12 to 14 hours. Dough will be bubbly and very sticky.
  3. Place a silicone baking mat onto a baking sheet and dust generously with cornmeal.
  4. Use a floured spatula to scrape dough out onto a well-floured work surface and dust dough with flour. With well-floured hands, pat dough into a rectangle and cut into 4 equal-size pieces.
  5. Dust a piece of dough with flour and use your floured fingers to gently roll and stretch it out into a log about 10 inches long and 1 1/2 inches around. Gently transfer to prepared baking sheet. If desired, wipe off excess cornmeal with a damp paper towel. Repeat with another piece of dough. (Reserve remaining dough to bake later or prepare 2 baking sheets to bake all 4 at once). Dust loaves lightly with flour. Dust a large piece of plastic wrap with flour and drape plastic lightly over the baking sheet with floured side down.
  6. Let loaves rise, covered, until doubled, 1 to 1 1/2 hour.
  7. Move oven racks to the bottom and middle positions. Preheat oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C) or as high as your oven will go. Place an oven-safe baking dish full of water into bottom rack of the oven.
  8. Use a sharp kitchen shears to cut 4 or 5 angled slashes into the top of each loaf. Poke down the little sharp tips of dough left by the scissors. Spray loaves with water, using a spray bottle.
  9. Bake in the preheated oven until baguettes are browned, about 15 minutes, spraying loaves with water after 5 minutes and 10 minutes. Turn the pan around on the second spraying.
  10. Transfer baguettes to a cooling rack and let cool to room temperature before slicing with a serrated knife.

Footnotes

  • Cook's Note:
  • For best results, measure by weight, not volume for this. You should measure out 325 grams water and 18 ounces flour by weight (500 grams).

Nutrition Facts


Per Serving: 305 calories; 0.8 63.8 8.7 0 682 Full nutrition

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Reviews

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  1. 59 Ratings

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Most helpful positive review

A very nice baguette recipe. The dough was much looser (wetter) than I remember from culinary school, but it turned out great. I doubled the yeast to half a teaspoon and got a nice rise in abo...

Most helpful critical review

I made this bread today,was not impressed. It was dry and very dense,waste of my time.

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A very nice baguette recipe. The dough was much looser (wetter) than I remember from culinary school, but it turned out great. I doubled the yeast to half a teaspoon and got a nice rise in abo...

Very easy and very tasty. Almost full proof. I used Bread Flour instead of all purpose flour and I think got better results.

I made this no-knead bread this weekend and it was delicious. My husband and I ate all four loaves in two days. I froze 2 loaves and let them thaw on the counter and then stuck them in a 350F ...

Excellent recipe and techniques. If making for bruschetta, I suggest rolling into logs about 3/4 of an inch thick and reduce cooking time by 2-3 minutes still allowing for 3 mistings. I also tri...

My first attempt I must not have let the dough rise sufficiently because my bread was a bit too moist and underdone even though the crust browned perfectly. My second attempt was much better. I...

I made this bread today,was not impressed. It was dry and very dense,waste of my time.

-Just made this -only took 4 hrs -made in bread machine(bread machine yeast) -had to add a lil extra water - after dough cycle oil a bowl and roll dough all around and set in warm place with d...

Easy and DELICIOUS! I love how it only takes a tiny bit of yeast too.

Excellent recipe! I have made this dozens of times and find it to be an excellent no-kneed French Bread recipe. I typically make the dough into three small baguettes, but I've also used this...