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Country Loaf

Looking for a bread recipe to bake at home? Then check out this large crusty loaf made country style – perfect for breakfast!

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  • prep time 25 min
  • total time 4 hr 5 min
  • ingredients 6
  • servings 32
 

Ingredients

5
to 5 1/2 cups bread flour
1
teaspoon sugar
1
package regular or quick active dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
2
cups very warm water (120° to 130°)
2
tablespoons olive or vegetable oil
2
teaspoons salt

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LOCATION

Steps

  • 1 Mix 2 cups of the flour, the sugar and yeast in large bowl. Add warm water. Beat with wire whisk or electric mixer on low speed 1 minute, scraping bowl frequently. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and let stand about 1 hour until bubbly.
  • 2 Stir in oil and salt. Stir in enough remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until a soft, smooth dough forms. Place dough on lightly floured surface. Knead about 10 minutes, adding flour as necessary to keep dough from sticking, until dough is smooth and springy.
  • 3 Place dough in large bowl greased with shortening, turning dough to grease all sides. Cover bowl loosely with plastic wrap and let rise in warm place about 1 hour or until double. Dough is ready if indentation remains when touched.
  • 4 Grease uninsulated cookie sheet with shortening. Place dough on lightly floured surface. Gently shape into an even, round ball, without releasing all of the bubbles in the dough. Stretch sides of dough downward to make a smooth top. Place loaf with smooth side up on cookie sheet. Spray loaf with cool water. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise in warm place 45 to 60 minutes or until almost double.
  • 5 Place square pan, 8x8x2 or 9x9x2 inches, on bottom rack of oven; add hot water to pan until about 1/2 inch from the top. Heat oven to 425°.
  • 6 Spray loaf with cool water; sprinkle lightly with flour. Carefully cut three 1/4-inch- deep slashes on top of loaf with sharp serrated knife.
  • 7 Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until loaf is deep golden brown with crisp crust and sounds hollow when tapped. Remove from cookie sheet to wire rack; cool.
  • 1 Mix 2 cups of the flour, the sugar and yeast in large bowl. Add warm water. Beat with wire whisk or electric mixer on low speed 1 minute, scraping bowl frequently. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and let stand about 1 hour until bubbly.
  • 2 Stir in oil and salt. Stir in enough remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until a soft, smooth dough forms. Place dough on lightly floured surface. Knead about 10 minutes, adding flour as necessary to keep dough from sticking, until dough is smooth and springy.
  • 3 Place dough in large bowl greased with shortening, turning dough to grease all sides. Cover bowl loosely with plastic wrap and let rise in warm place about 1 hour or until double. Dough is ready if indentation remains when touched.
  • 4 Grease uninsulated cookie sheet with shortening. Place dough on lightly floured surface. Gently shape into an even, round ball, without releasing all of the bubbles in the dough. Stretch sides of dough downward to make a smooth top. Place loaf with smooth side up on cookie sheet. Spray loaf with cool water. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise in warm place 45 to 60 minutes or until almost double.
  • 5 Place square pan, 8x8x2 or 9x9x2 inches, on bottom rack of oven; add hot water to pan until about 1/2 inch from the top. Heat oven to 425°.
  • 6 Spray loaf with cool water; sprinkle lightly with flour. Carefully cut three 1/4-inch- deep slashes on top of loaf with sharp serrated knife.
  • 7 Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until loaf is deep golden brown with crisp crust and sounds hollow when tapped. Remove from cookie sheet to wire rack; cool.

EXPERT TIPS

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Expert Tips

This large, crusty loaf gains a country quality when dusted with flour before baking. Copy the trend in restaurants by serving this bread with a little plate pooled with olive oil and sprinkled with shredded Parmesan cheese and some olives. Be sure to use bread flour because it contains a higher amount of gluten than all-purpose flour.

Whole Wheat Country Loaf: Substitute 2 cups whole wheat flour for 2 cups of the bread flour.

Nutritional information

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Nutrition Information

NUTRITION INFORMATION PER SERVING

Serving Size: 1 Slice
Calories
80
(
Calories from Fat
10),
% Daily Value
Total Fat
1g
1%
(Saturated Fat
0g,
0%
),
Cholesterol
0mg
0%;
Sodium
150mg
150%;
Total Carbohydrate
17g
17%
(Dietary Fiber
1g
1%
),
Protein
2g
2%
;
% Daily Value*:
Iron
6%;
Exchanges:
1 Starch;
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.