Tuesday, August 19, 2008
We practically gorge ourselves on tomato bruschetta in the summertime. We've eaten it for breakfast (not a good idea if we plan to be around other human beings that day..we tend to go a little heavy on the garlic) and we often have it for dinner.
I have been baking our own bread this summer and have been experimenting with recipes for a good sourdough type baguette...I know I should just make my own sourdough starter but that would be like a major commitment to bake sourdough all the time. I'm just not ready for that kind of commitment!
My search led me to a recipe by Linda Larsen on About.com. I am always drawn to a recipe that claims to be easy. Instead of a starter, this recipe uses sour cream or yogurt to add the sourdough "tang." I made a few adjustments and it turned out great...who can resist sampling bread fresh from the oven.....and we'll be having bruschetta for dinner tonight!
Terry's Version of Easy Sourdough French Bread
4 - 5 cups all purpose flour
1 T sugar
2 t salt
2 pkgs dry yeast
1 c warm water
1 cup low fat plain yogurt
2 T vinegar
Combine 1 1/2 cups flour and remaining dry ingredients in a large bowl (I used my mixer for this step) Add water, yogurt and vinegar and beat well. Add 2 to 2 1/2 cups flour until dough forms.
On floured surface, knead in 1 cup more flour until bread is smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Place dough in greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover and let rise for 30 - 35 minutes.
I have baguette pans but if you don't, simply grease a large cookie sheet. Punch down dough and cover with an overturned bowl for 15 minutes. Divide dough in half and roll each half to 14"x8" rectangle. Starting with the long side, roll dough up tightly and pinch edges firmly to seal. Place seam side down on prepared cookie sheet. With a sharp knife make diagonal slashes in the top of each baguette. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 15 minutes.
Heat oven to 375 degrees. I put a shallow pan of hot water on the bottom rack to encourage a crustier loaf. Bake bread for 30 - 35 minutes until bread is golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped. Remove from cookie sheet and cool on wire rack. Makes 2 loaves.