Craving Baguettes……..that should be the name of the bakery I own in my imagination. I have a quaint little shop. It has a large case with baguettes, Italian bread and focaccia on one side and breakfast breads, banana bread, cranberry apple bread on the other. A smaller glassed display will have cookies. And buns. Yes, I need to have buns available – the ooey, gooey sticky sort and the buttery ones as well. The aroma in the shop will cause one to stop, turn their nose upwards and inhale the narcotic-like scent of warm bread.
I’d keep a pot of coffee going…and water for tea.
There are French doors that lead out to a bricked patio with an intimate gathering of bistro tables. Say, 6 tables at the most. The tables have umbrellas colored in deep blue and red. There are plants and a wall fountain that splashes water out at a slow rate with relaxing plops, trickling into the aged bronzy looking bowl. The ornate wrought iron fencing enclosing the patio is adorned with hanging ferns and flowers.
But fact is…….I don’t own a bakery and I am almost as lazy as Jeff Lebowski so I content myself with the occasional dream of my own place. Also, in the dream I have more drive and ambition so perhaps Craving Baguettes would be a success. Alas….the most motivated I get is preparing bread for my family (and I enjoy that very much) so..here is a baguette I made. I used the bread machine to start the dough for me. After and hour and a half, I shaped and baked it. Pure enjoyment.
This recipe was procured from All Recipes (dot) com
1 cup water
2 1/2 cups bread flour
1 tablespoon white sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons bread machine yeast
1 egg yolk
1 tablespoon water
Place 1 cup water, bread flour, sugar, salt and yeast into bread machine pan in the order recommended by manufacturer. Select Dough cycle, and press Start.
When the cycle has completed, place dough in a greased bowl, turning to coat all sides. Cover, and let rise in a warm place for about 30 minutes, or until doubled in bulk. Dough is ready if indentation remains when touched.
Punch down dough. On a lightly floured surface, roll into a 16x12 inch rectangle. Cut dough in half, creating two 8x12 inch rectangles. Roll up each half of dough tightly, beginning at 12 inch side, pounding out any air bubbles as you go. Roll gently back and forth to taper end. Place 3 inches apart on a greased cookie sheet. Make deep diagonal slashes across loaves every 2 inches, or make one lengthwise slash on each loaf. Cover, and let rise in a warm place for 30 to 40 minutes, or until doubled in bulk.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Mix egg yolk with 1 tablespoon water; brush over tops of loaves.
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven, or until golden brown.
But for the record, family members of mine owned a bakery a loooong time a ago. It was called Dalton's Bakery and it was located in Chester Pennsylvania. I have some of the old recipes from the Dalton family and I ought to dig those out.
The bakery was quite popular but it closed up in the 1950s I think. Fun memories.
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