Friends and French Bread

Another fine weekend around these parts.  I saw 51* as a Sunday afternoon high!

Saturday we had our last Hand-E-Hands CFEL Club meeting.  Christmas cheer was in the air.  Members and Husbands enjoyed a bountiful potluck dinner of turkey and all festive Christmas trimmings.  We filled boxes with goodies to give to neighbors and sent Christmas greetings to past Club members.  The ladies did a gift exchange, and conducted the the last business meeting.

Back row:  P.G., J’s Mom B, J.C. (neighbor in our cattle working crew).

Front row: R. VDB. and I.

A couple weeks ago I felt like French Bread Pizza.  I have also been wanting to try to make my own French Bread.  A few yeas ago I picked up Taste of Home’s Complete Guide to Baking.  It is a beautiful book with a lot of tips, tricks and details.  I found this recipe for Crusty French Bread.

My bread turned out beautiful.  The Hubby and I both love it!  Success on the first try.  I tried this same recipe a second time.  A keeper recipe for simple delicious bread.


1 package (1/4 ounce) OR 2 1/2 teaspoons Active Dry Yeast

1-1/2 C warm Water, divided

1 T Sugar

2 teaspoons Salt

1 T Butter, melted OR Extra Virgin Olive Oil

4 C All-Purpose Flour – The first time I used half White Whole Wheat Flour and half All-Purpose Flour sifted together.   The second time I used half White Whole Wheat Flour, 1/4 Whole Wheat flour and 1/4 All-Purpose Flour sifted together. Both times I made this recipe 4 C of flour was too much.  Next time I am going to add 3 1/2 C and read the dough from there.



In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in 1/2 cup water.

Add the sugar, salt, shortening, remaining 1 cup water and 3-1/2 cups flour. Beat until smooth.

Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.  Do not knead.

Cover and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour or until doubled.

Turn onto a floured surface. Divide in half; let rest for 10 minutes.

Roll each half into a 10-in. x 8-in. rectangle.

Roll up from a long side; pinch to seal.

Place seam side down on greased baking sheets.

Cover and let rise until doubled, about 45 minutes.

Bake at 400° for 20-30 minutes or until lightly browned.  Both times I made this bread it baked faster than I thought.  After at 18-20 minutes I would start watching it close or it will brown too quick.

Remove from pans to wire rack to cool. 


This french bread makes a fabulous sandwich and pizza.  I have also made garlic bread and look forward to trying it in French Onion Soup too!


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10 Responses to Friends and French Bread

  1. Jona says:

    Mmmm, french onion soup! Don’t forget to toast it or let it dry out a bit first. The soup is not quite the same with fresh, very moist bread. At least in my opinion…

    • Robyn says:

      There is a story here … I made the French Bread for pizza, but J used it for a sandwich one to many times and I didn’t have enough for pizza. Then I had the French Onion soup idea. I made a roast and kept the juice. I put said juice in the grill outside b/c my refrigerator was full. Then I forgot where I put the juice. I knew I didn’t toss it out. So, a few days later I took food pictures and found the juice. Then I went to look for my soup recipe and could not find it. The next day I found the recipe. It was hiding between 2 slips of paper on the recipe holder I keep on the kitchen counter. By that time the French Bread was long gone and we had soup with regular store bread.

      Your comment about letting the bread dry out a little … genius! Really, tell M you are a genius! You know how we love French Onion soup around here and the soup was good. But, I was not overly excited about the bread now I now why. Thanks for the tip.

  2. Jennifer says:

    Mmm. That looks delicious. I think I’ve made bread once in my life and it didn’t go well. But I’ve been thinking I’d like to try again. I may start with this recipe! Hope you and yours have a very merry Christmas!

    • Robyn says:

      Merry Christmas to you Jennifer! I hope you have good luck baking bread. Yeast is a little intimidating, but after you have delicious bread you will love it!

  3. Candy C. says:

    French bread is so simple and SOOO good and I like the addition of the wheat flour to give it more interest! You’ll have to let us know how the pizza turns out if you ever have enough bread left to make it! 😉

  4. I love french bread. I have a recipe that not always turns out good. I need to try out yours. Thanks for sharing!

  5. K.Young says:

    Wish I had seen this recipe earlier this afternoon. I am so making this tomorrow! Having soup tonight and forgot to think about bread, so will have some gourmet crackers with it ~

    • Robyn says:

      Thank You for checking out my blog! I hope you enjoy the french bread. Your White Chocolate Kissed Gingerbread Cookies look perfect.

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