Saturday, March 7, 2009

French Bread

We love Kroger's take-and-bake french bread... but, I wanted to try and make some of our own. A while ago I stumbled upon Sonshine's Bread Machine French Bread, and we tried it this weekend. I think it beat out the Kroger bread... now, we'll have to use it to make our "Kroger" baked sandwiches :)

French Bread in the Bread Machine - Sonshine
makes a 1 1/2 lb loaf 

1 C + 1 T warm water (about 80 degrees F)
3 cups bread flour
2 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 T. butter (I used less... about a half)
2 tsp. active dry yeast OR 1 1/2 tsp. bread machine/fast rise yeast

Depending on the order ingredients go into your bread machine... place ingredients in the machine. I combined mine in the following way:

1) Place water in the bread maker
2) Butter, cut into chunks

3) Salt
4) 3 C bread flour (I LOVE King Arthur)

5) Sugar
6) Yeast

Then, set the bread machine on the dough setting and allow dough to knead. My setting takes 1.5 hours.

After dough cycle ends, remove dough and place on a floured surface. Cover and allow dough to sit for 15 minutes.

Knead dough just a bit, and shape into a loaf.

(Disclaimer: I'm not very good yet at shaping dough... but, the bread still tastes good!)

Cover, and let dough rise for 30 minutes. I let mine rise a bit longer... closer to 45 minutes, so that it would be ready with dinner, and I don't think it hurt anything.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly spray a cookie sheet (or, you can use a baking stone as Sonshine did and do not need to spray your stone), and bake for 15-25 minutes, or until slightly browned on the top.


  1. I just tried this recipe and my very first time making bread!! I hope it tastes as yummy as yours looks

  2. So gonna do this to go with our pot roast tonight! Why didn't I ever think of just taking the dough out of the machine??! Thanks for the great tutorial.

    I like your blog, will be back to poke around soon.

  3. Hi! I just tried this bread and it is AMAZING! GREAT recipe. keep them coming!!

  4. I've made this bread 2 times for 2 different people and they have absolutely loved it! I'm getting requests for it. :)
    Thanks for sharing the wonderful recipe.

  5. Next time you make it, try using less flour when you remove it from the bread machine bowl, and you can even knead it a few strokes to work some of the flour in, until it is tacky but not sticky. It looks as though there was too much flour when you went to shape the loaf.
    I'm making this right now, without a bread machine, and I'm excited to see how it turns out!

  6. I made this bread last night and it was FANTASTIC! I served it with homemade chicken wild rice soup and it was a terrific complement to the soup. Thanks for another great recipe! (And believe me, my loaf turned out a lot funkier-looking than yours. I definitely some bread-loaf-shaping tutorials!) :-)

  7. @ Holly -

    I'm so glad that you enjoyed the bread! I've been reading about how to shape bread lately, so I'll have to try it on a loaf and share what I learn! But, the good news is -- no matter what it looks like, it still tastes good :)

  8. making this when I make lasanga this week :) Can't wait!

  9. Hi there! This bread looks fantastic, but I don't have a bread machine. I'm new to bread making - do you know how to do it without a machine? It's my hubby's favorite kind of bread so I'd love to be able to make it for him!

  10. @Megan and John

    Hi Megan! Yes, you can make this bread without a bread machine.

    1) Combine the yeast and warm water. Allow the yeast to get foamy.

    2) Add in the butter (you will likely want to melt it), sugar and salt. Stir.

    3) Begin by adding the flour 1 C at a time. Use a wooden spoon or tough spatula to stir the flour in. Add all the flour in until a solid dough forms.

    4) Then, remove the dough from the bowl and place it on a lightly floured (use more bread flour) surface.

    5) Using your hands (make sure they are well floured too!), knead the dough for 5-10 minutes until it is soft and smooth and no longer sticky.

    You will likely need to add more flour as you go.

    6) Then, place the dough in a lightly greased bowl. Make sure the bowl has room for the dough to double in size. Cover with a tea towel or a piece of lightly greased Saran wrap.

    7) Allow the dough to double in size. About 1 hour.

    8) Punch the dough down (this releases the trapped air), and then shape into a loaf.

    9) Cover, and allow the dough to rise again, about another hour, until doubled.

    10) Bake according to directions in this post.

    Hope that helps! I'd love to hear how it turns out, if you try it.

  11. Just made this today and it was a big hit! So much so that I fumed all evening because I put so much more effort into making the lasagna that folks barely noticed because they were gushing about the bread. Thanks for sharing!

  12. This has quickly become my "go-to" bread ... Using my kitchen aid I can easily double the batch (or today I tripled it). As for shaping the bread, I go easy.. once I'm done kneading it I'll hand roll it out into a log shape and then use my bench scraper to cut it into equal portions. From there it's easy to just make round loafs.

    I've experimented with adding herbs ~~ basil, Italian seasoning, and it works great.

    The bread freezes and then thaws like a champ


Thanks for stopping by! I'd love to hear from you; especially how you're finding JOY in your kitchen.

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