25 Mar

I’m running my first half-marathon this weekend (along side VBH and SK).

I’m pretty much a fan of any activity that encourages carb consumption before participating.

This week dough was the topic of my cooking class. We’re doing a little pasta dinner at home tomorrow night, so I decided to bake baguettes for the occasion.

Here’s what I learned about bread baking in class:

yeast is alive. true story. cooking kills it.

no need to add sugar when recipes say it. it’s really only a way of finding out if your yeast is still alive.

always, always add flour to your water/yeast mixture before adding salt. salt will kill the yeast if there is no flour first.

use the paddle attachment instead of the dough hook on your kitchenaid.

you can’t over knead dough.

With those helpful tips, I set out to bake these beauties using this recipe from Allrecipes:

1 cup warm water
1.5 tsp yeast
2.5 cups flour
pinch of salt
1 egg for egg wash

  • add yeast to warm water in the bowl of a stand mixer and let sit for 2-3 minutes
  • turn on mixer and add about 1/2 cup of flour
  • add salt
  • slowly add the rest of flour until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl
  • turn dough onto a floured surface and knead until very smooth and elastic, about 15 minutes
  • place dough in a greased bowl, cover, and let sit for 30 minutes
  • punch down dough and roll into a16x12 inch rectangle. Cut dough in half, creating two 8×12 inch rectangles. Roll up each half of dough tightly, beginning at 12 inch side, pounding out any air bubbles as you go. Roll gently back and forth to taper end.
  • Place 3 inches apart on a greased cookie sheet. Make deep diagonal slashes across loaves every 2 inches, or make one lengthwise slash on each loaf.
  • Cover, and let rise in a warm place for 30 to 40 minutes, or until doubled in bulk.
  • preheat oven to 375.
  • bake for 20-25 minutes

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