Now here is the gluten free below---It tasted really good, but the looks need some improvement!
The regular loaf of French Bread pictured in the second photo came out nice and crisp on the outside. I followed the Betty Crocker's recipe.....but you have to be home because it has several risings!!
1 package of active dry yeast (I used 2&1/4 tsp of the bread maker yeast--)
1&1/4 cup of warm water (105-115 degrees F.)
1&1/2 tsp salt
1 Tab. shortening (I used olive oil)
3&1/2 to 4 cups all purpose or unbleached flour
1 egg white
Dissolve yeast in warm water in large bowl. Wait a few moments. Add salt, oil and 1&1/2 cups of the flour. Beat with spoon until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to make dough easy to handle.
Turn dough onto lightly floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Place in greased bowl; turn greased side up. Cover with a damp cloth; let rise in warm place until double, 1&1/2 to 2 hours. (Mine rose faster).
Punch down dough; round up and let rise (covered)until almost double again!! ....about 45 minutes.
Punch down again; cover and let rest 15 minutes.
Roll dough into rectangle, 15 by 10 inches. Roll up tightly, beginning at one of the long sides. Pinch edge to seal. Roll gently back and forth to taper ends.
Place loaf on a parchment lined baking sheet. Make 1/4 inch deep slashes across the loaf at 2 inch intervals. (Or if you like, you can make just one slash the length of the loaf).
Brush top of loaf with cold water. Let rise until double---30 minutes to 1&1/2 hours depending!!
Then brush again with cold water.
Heat oven to 375 F. Bake 20 minutes. Beat egg white and 2 tab. of cold water slightly; brush over loaf . Bake 25 minutes longer(watch carefully for not over browning). Remove from baking sheet and cool on wire rack.
Sub Option: you can divide dough into 4 equal parts rolling rectangles of 6x5 inches---and rolling up to make submarine loaves (some call them hoggies or grinders)---you do 1 slash down the length of each loaf==rise until double, about 40 minutes and Bake about 15 minutes.
For the GLUTEN FREE LOAF from a mag:
Well actually this gluten free one was called a French Baguette!! so perhaps a bit different from French bread--a bit narrower?
It says, this bread is best when eaten within two days. To crisp and freshen, place the bread in a preheated oven (350 degrees )for 5 minutes. It will keep up to 2 months in freezer, wrapping in plastic wrap and then foil.
3 cups gluten free high protein flour blend (recipe below)
2 teaspoons xanthan gum (you must have this)
1 tsp salt
3 tab sugar
1 tab active dry yeast
1-2 tsp dried rosemary or I like Mrs. Dash Italian seasoning --I use more
1 tab olive oil
1&1/2 cups warm water
Grease or lightly spray a double-French bread pan and dust with white rice flour or cornmeal. (I DID NOT HAVE THIS SPECIAL PAN --SO I JUST ROLLED IT AND PUT IT ON A COOKIE SHEET COVERED WITH PARCHMENT PAPER)
Sift first 4 ingredients above into a large mixing bowl. Add yeast and herbs. Mix to incorporate ingredients.
Blend olive oil and warm water (110-120 F) into dry ingredients and mix on high speed for 4 minutes (I did by hand)
Spoon 1/2 the dough into each loaf pan , spreading dough into the shape of a French loaf. (The dough won't fill the length of the pan. It should be about 10-12 inches long) (I placed mine on parchment paper to roll it---wrapping the paper around it. Then I placed it on a fresh piece of parchment paper on a cookie sheet.
Place a damp Kitchen towel over the dough and place in warm area to rise--about 35 minutes (I let it rise longer!!). The middle of each loaf should rise to the top of the special loaf pan and be double its original size.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Bake in the lower third of preheated oven for 30-35 minutes. After the first 20 minutes, check the bread for browning. If it is well browned, cover it loosely with a piece of aluminum foil. When finished, bread sounds hollow when tapped and registers 200-220 degrees on an instant read thermometer. (I turned mine over since the bottom was browning way faster than the top.
ANOTHER OPTION IS FRENCH BOULE made from the gluten free recipe above but with one change in the amount of water:
Using the recipe above decrease the water to 1&1/3 cups. Grease a round 8-9 inch round pan and dust with white Rice flour or cornmeal. The sides of the pan should be at least 3 inches high (you can make a collar with lightly oiled aluminum foil to make sides higher). Place dough into the pan. Dust to with white rice flour. Cover with towel and let rise until double. Bake in preheated 400 degree oven for 30 minutes. Let bread cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan.
THE GLUTEN FREE HIGH PROTEIN FLOUR BLEND (THAT YOU NEED FOR THE gf RECIPE)
1&1/4 CUPS BEAN FLOUR (CHICKPEA OR SOY FLOUR)
1 CUP ARROWROOT STARCH OR CORNSTARCH OR POTATO STARCH
1 CUP TAPIOCA STARCH/FLOUR
1 CUP WHITE OR BROWN RICE FLOUR
Mi x this up and only use the amount of the mixture specified in the recipes above.