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Traditional crusty French baguette

discover the baker in you under quarantine

At the supermarket flour and yeast are sold out. Probably this quarantine period has served to motivate us to learn how to do things and sometimes even to make them. We understand that knowing how to perform tasks that in normal everyday life would not seem as fundamental as kneading bread and baking it or cutting our hair, has become a state of pleasant survival. Because we benefit from the intimate pleasure of being free and self-reliant, we feel fulfilled if we have been able to cook a delicious meal for us or have done yoga simply through a video on Youtube. Quarantine, however, I would like to specify it, should not necessarily be interpreted for everyone as an abundance of time available for themselves, because for many people, and fortunately, work continues from home, but as a different condition from the norm that should make us reflect on the scale of values in our lives and in that of others. All this preamble to talking about a baguette? Well, yes! Bread is the basis of our meals, it is demanding in its preparation, it requires devotion and concentration: it is the ascetic practice quintessentially among cookers! And bread is the one that accompanies almost any of our meals: “cumpanaticum“, as the Latins used to say. This recipe is perfect to prove to yourself that you are able to prepare a baguette like a true professional, without being such. Serve it as you prefer, I have chosen a pesto of artichokes and a drizzle of Sicilian oil for mine.

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Tori Amos

Traditional baguette

  • Servings: 2 baguettes
  • Difficulty: medium
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Ingredients

  • 400 g flour (all-purpose flour or 405 flour in Germany)
  • 245 g water
  • 10 g salt
  • 1 tsp instant yeast
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp lukewarm water

Directions

  1. In a small bowl mix the yeast with the sugar and lukewarm water cover and let it rest for about 15 minutes to activate.  
  2. Knead the flour, water, salt the activated yeast using an electric mixer for about 5 minutes: the dough should pull away from the side of the bowl. 
  3.  Leave the dough on a floured surface covered with a tea towel and let it rest for about 20 minutes.
  4. Fold the dough over itself, cover with the tea towel and let it rest for the other 30 minutes.
  5. Using a dough cutter divide the dough in two. Make each into an elongated shape by rolling the dough under the palms of your hands. Let it rest under the tea towel for 30 minutes.
  6. Shape the dough into baguettes by pushing your thumb along it and rolling under your palms until you reach the desired length.
  7. If you have a baguette baking tray, place the baguettes in the slots, otherwise use a baking sheet, cover, and let it rest for 2 hours.
  8. Place a heatproof bowl filled with water in the oven and preheat to 260° C.
  9. Make a single slash the length of each baguette.
  10. Bake for 20-25 minutes.


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CategoriesBasic Italy