Good Cooking since 1995
French Bread an American bakery version...
Convert the recipe
Recipe by: Chef John V.
1 tablespoon honey
2 cups hot water (for oven steaming in a baking pan, see below.)
In professional bakeries the ovens have special ports where steam is
generated and injected into the ovens for several minutes. No home oven that
I know of yet can do this, so we use the hot pan water method to get steam
action for crispier crusts.
Make the dough early in the day; let's say around 8-9 AM
to be ready for dinner.
Remove let cool 2-3 minutes and then remove from the pan on to a wire
rack to cool.
(There are varing techniques, some bakers use a couche and then a peel to slice the loaves onto a baking stone. I have found that using a special French bread baking pan to be sort of a fool proof way at home.)
Optional for a crispier loaf: (Place a heavy duty roasting pan on the bottom of the oven, it's to be filled later with water after the loaves go in.)
Slash diagonally 3 times or snip with scissors, be careful not to deflate
the loaves. Spritz with water from a spray bottle just to moisten. Place the dough in the oven on
the top rack, pour about 2 cups hot water into the preheated roasting pan
set on the oven bottom, above the pan of water and bake. Remove and cool on a
Note: This dough is meant to be on the sticky side, so use some extra flour when handling it---don't use too much though. Handle, form and shape the dough gently so it doesn't deflate, but firmly enough to to seal the seam.
This recipe can also be used for pizza, calzone and rolls.