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Crusty French Bread

This recipe makes three loaves, which may be too much for your needs. You can always freeze a loaf for future use.
Makes three medium baguettes, about ¾ pound each
Approximate preparation time: 10 to 15 minutes, plus 2 to 3½ hours rising and resting, 30 minutes baking, and 1 hour or longer cooling


2¼ teaspoons active dry yeast
1¼ cups warm water, (105° to 110° F)
5 cups unbleached, all-purpose or bread flour
²∕³ cup cake flour
¹∕³ cup wheat germ
2¼ teaspoons kosher salt
²∕³ cup cold water
extra flour for dusting bread


Dissolve the yeast in warm water in a large liquid measuring cup. Let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes.
Insert the dough blade into the large work bowl of the Cuisinart® Food Processor. Add the flours, wheat germ and salt and process on the dough speed until combined, about 10 to 15 seconds. Add the cold water to yeast mixture. With the machine running on dough speed, pour the liquid through the feed tube as fast as the flour absorbs it. Once the dough cleans the sides of the work bowl and forms a ball, process for 45 seconds to knead dough. Dough should be smooth and elastic.
Place the dough in a lightly floured plastic food storage bag and seal. Allow to rest in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 to 1½ hours.
Punch dough down and let rise again until doubled in size. (This rise can be omitted if pressed for time, but makes for a more flavorful loaf, with a more “artisanal” bread texture and crust.) Punch dough down and divide into three pieces. Shape each into a long narrow loaf, about 16 to 18 inches in length, and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled, about 45 to 60 minutes.
Preheat oven to 425°F.
Dust loaves with flour. Using a serrated knife, make 4 or 5 diagonal slashes in each loaf about ¼ inch deep. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes until browned and hollow sounding when tapped. Cool on a wire rack. Bread slices best when allowed to cool completely before slicing.

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no serving information available

Nutritional Information
Per Serving

Nutritional information per serving (1 slice): Calories 139 (19% from fat) | carb. 25g | pro. 3g | fat 3g | sat. fat 2g | chol. 8mg | sod. 243mg | calc. 30mg | fiber 1g

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