This recipe started off as an experiment and due to an error, turned out really good, and now I always make it this way.
The error is the large amount of yeast. This creates big holes in the baguettes, a lot like in a sourdough.
Makes 2 small baguettes
- 500g white bread flour (sifted)
- 10g salt
- 20g dried bread yeast
- 300ml warm water (give or take)
- 4 garlic cloves (grated)
Put the flour and salt into a large bowl and mix together.
Add the yeast and garlic, then slowly add the water and mix together to form a dough. You can add more or less water depending on how your dough feels. I find it varies slightly every time.
Tip out onto your worktop and knead for 10 minutes. I don’t bother to flour or oil the worktop, I never really found it necessary.
Here is a short video of how I like to kneed my dough. Stretch it out, then roll it back in and give it a 90 degree turn, before stretching it out again. This works quite well for a slightly sticky dough.
Put your dough into a lightly oiled bowl and cover loosely with a plastic bag to stop it drying out. Place somewhere warm, I usually put it near our wood-burner or in the conservatory on a warm day.
Leave to prove for about 2 hours until the dough has roughly doubled in size.
Tip your dough back out onto your work surface and carefully deflate it by poking it with your fingers.
Divide the dough into 2 and shape into baguettes.
Place the baguettes into a lightly greased baguette baking tray.
Heat your oven to its highest temperature and boil the kettle.
Place some water in a baking tray at the bottom of the oven, this will help to create a good crust on your baguettes.
Add a little olive oil to the tops of the baguettes and slash the tops with a sharp, serrated knife. Put your baguette tray in the centre of the oven.
Put your loaf in the centre of the oven for 10 minutes before dropping the temperature to 200 degrees if the crust is looking pale, 180 degrees if the crust is noticeably browning, and 170 if it seems to be browning quickly. Cook for a further 30 mins.
Remove from the oven and serve whilst still warm.