As you may have figured out from some of my earlier posts, I did not grow up eating food made from scratch. My mom is a good cook, but definitely used boxed mixes and convenience items. So where did I get the idea to eat real food? DH would blame my friend and former co-worker Holly. She’s the one who told me about kombucha, turned her front lawn into a garden, and made a believer of raw milk out of me when she brought fromage blanc to work.
She just had a baby, and I don’t get to see her as much now that we’re not working together, but we keep in touch through FaceBook. Good thing, because I got a new KitchenAid for Christmas and couldn’t find her “best breads” email that she had sent me oh, a year or two ago!
I decided to christen my KitchenAid by making the Basic French Loaf.
BASIC FRENCH LOAF
2 c very warm water
1 ½ T yeast
1 T sugar
-whisk together in mixing bowl, let proof 5 minutes
1 T salt
5-6 c flour
-add salt and 2 c flour, mix with dough hook.
-slowly add flour til the dough all pulls away from the side
-knead for 8 minutes (Note: If using a heavy duty mixer, mix until it starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl and is nice and elastic; it will only take a few minutes)
-cover and let rise til double (apx 1 hour)
-punch down, form into 2-3 freeform loaves, let rise on greased cookie sheets, covered.
-preheat oven for 20 minutes at 400 degrees.
-when loaves have doubled, put in oven with 4 ice cubes on bottom of oven
-bake 30-35 minutes til crusty.
The Verdict: Oh my, this was perfect! I fed it to the guys who were helping DH brew beer in the garage and they snapped it up. It’s the perfect flavor and texture.