Classic Bread Machine French Bread
- Enough for 1 to 2 loaves
- 1 hr 20 min
Add 3/4 cup [1-1/4 cups] water, salt, bread flour, and yeast to bread machine pan in the order suggested by manufacturer. Select dough/manual cycle.
When cycle is complete, remove dough from machine to a lightly floured surface. If necessary, knead in enough flour to make dough easy to handle. Roll dough into a 15 x 10-inch rectangle. [For 1 1/2-pound recipe, divide dough in half and roll each half into a 10 x 8-inch rectangle.] Beginning at long end, roll up tightly as for jelly roll. Pinch seams and ends to seal. Taper ends by gently rolling back and forth. Place each loaf, seam side down, on a greased baking sheet sprinkled with cornmeal. Lightly brush each loaf with oil. Cover and let rise in warm, draft-free place until almost doubled in size, 10 to 15 minutes.
Lightly beat egg white and 1 tablespoon water; brush some of egg white mixture over top of each loaf. With a sharp knife, make 3 or 4 diagonal cuts about 1/4 inch deep across the top of each loaf.
Bake at 375oF for 20 minutes. Brush again with remaining egg white mixture. Bake 5 to 10 minutes more or until done – bread should sound hollow when tapped. (For even browning when baking two loaves, switch positions of sheets halfway through baking.) Remove the bread[s] from the sheet[s]; cool on a wire rack.