Submitted by PaddyL on January 05, 2004 at 11:39 am
This is a recipe I adapted from Acadian Bread in Janice Murray Gill's Great Canadian Bread Book.
2 cups lukewarm water
1 tbsp. sugar
1 tbsp. active dry yeast
1 tbsp. salt
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp. vinegar
5 tsps. vegetable oil
6 cups, approx., all-purpose or bread flour
Put the water in a large mixing bowl with the sugar and yeast and let it bubble up for about 10 minutes. Add the salt, egg, vinegar, and oil and stir. Beat in the flour until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl. Turn out and knead, adding bits of flour to keep it from sticking, for about 8-10 minutes, or until it's smooth and elastic. If you pick up the dough and slam it down on the work surface during the kneading, this helps both you and the dough. Put into a greased bowl, grease the top lightly, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise till double.
Punch down and let rise again. (I've let it rise and punched it down up to 4 times.) Turn out and shape into 2 loaves, put into greased pans and let rise till double.
Preheat oven to 350F. I put an egg wash on my loaves and sprinkle them with sesame seeds, but you can leave them plain if you want. When the loaves have risen, bake for 40 minutes, or until they sound hollow when tapped on the bottoms. Cool on wire racks.
Note: If you double this recipe, do not double the salt, vinegar, or egg, as it changes the texture.
Replace the oil with 2 tablespoons of butter. Divide the dough into two parts, pre-shape into balls and let them sit for 10 minutes, then shape into batards about 12 inches long. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment and dusted with corn meal. Before baking spray loaves with water, dust with flour and slash down the middle for the length of the dough. Bake at 350 for about 45 minutes, rotating half way through.