Little Farm in the Big Woods

Italian Dinner Loaves

Friday, August 30, 2013 6:03 PM

I wish I could somehow include the smell in my house right now, as I have this bread baking.  Aaaaaahhhhh! Yum!  I can’t wait for it to come out of the oven so I can EAT IT!


Bread-

2 ½  cups warm milk or water                      1 T. SAF instant yeast 

6-7 c. Flour**  

      (I usually use a blend of all-purpose, whole wheat, & corn flours)

¼ cup Sucanat or honey                            ⅛ tsp onion powder (scant)

⅛ tsp granulated garlic (scant)                1 ½ tsp Italian Seasonings blend

2 tsp. salt 


Topping-

1 tsp poppy seeds                                        ¼ tsp granulated garlic

½ tsp dried, minced onion                         1 ½ tsp italian seasonings blend

¼ tsp salt                                                        ¼ tsp black pepper

1 egg


Combine the milk and yeast and let sit for five minutes, to "proof" the yeast.  Add Sucanat, onion powder, garlic, italian seasonings, vital gluten, and 2 cups of the flour in a large mixing bowl. Mix until everything is combined.  Add additional flour one cup at a time, just until the dough begins to clean the sides of the mixing bowl*. (When it begins to get closer, maybe add just a half cup or less at a time.  Too much flour makes for heavier bread.)  Click here for pictures


In a large mixer, knead on speed #1 for 4 minutes, then add salt and knead for 2 more minutes.


Cover mixing bowl with a damp towel and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size (about (25-30 min).

Place back on mixer and smash dough back down.

Form the dough into 2 french loaves and place on a pizza stone. Allow to rise in a slightly warmed oven or other warm place until doubled in size (about 30- 60 minutes). 


While your loaves are rising, mix the egg with a tablespoon or two of water, mix until frothy and set aside.  Then mix together all the dry ingredients for your topping.  


Just before baking, brush loaves with egg wash and sprinkle topping all over the top of the loaves.  Be gentle so the loaves don’t fall! 


This batch spread out more than I like, but they’ll still taste great.


Bake loaves for 20-25 minutes in a 400°F oven (Oven temperatures vary).

    *HIGH ALTITUDE- bake 20-25 minutes @ 425°

As you can see from the pictures, I usually double the recipe, so we have plenty.  ;)


**The flour measurements are really just a guideline.  You’re really looking for that point when the dough begins to pull away and clean the sides of the bo