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A recipe for an easy, soft French bread.

Grandma's French Bread | www.tasteandtellblog.com

I’ve been trying to be really good at making a weekly menu.  I’ll make the menu over the weekend, and then go grocery shopping on Monday.  (Ideally early Monday morning before stores get busy!)  That way, I have it all done for the week, and I don’t have to worry about it.  Going to the grocery store 2 or 3 times a week before I had a child was no big deal, but now going anywhere is an ordeal.  Any of you mothers out there know how much more time and effort it takes to take that little person along with you!!

So, this last week, I had my menu all planned out.  But I planned a recipe for later in the week that I needed French bread for.  It wasn’t the smartest planning, because I couldn’t very well buy a loaf of French bread on Monday, because by Friday, it wouldn’t be good anymore.  So I figured I’d just stop by a grocery store sometime during the week while I was out and about.  Well, that didn’t happen.  And Friday came around, and I had no plans for leaving the house.  Especially just to go get 1 loaf of French bread!  So, I decided to just make my own.

You would think that it takes more effort to make your own bread than running to the store, but really, this recipe was super easy. You do need some time where you can be close by – you have to tend to this recipe every 10 minutes for about an hour, but only for a few seconds at a time.  And I really think this recipe would be fool-proof!  I was super low on flour, so I ended up using half all-purpose flour and half whole wheat flour.  What I ended up with was some of the most delicious bread I’ve made!  This is a super soft bread – it doesn’t have a crusty exterior like an authentic French bread would have, but I kinda like it that way.  I think I found a go-to bread recipe!!

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Grandma’s French Bread
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A recipe for an easy, soft French bread.
Serves: 2 loaves
  • 2 ¼ c. warm water
  • 2 T. sugar
  • 1 Tbsp yeast
  • 1 Tbsp salt
  • 2 Tbsp oil
  • 5 ½ -6 cups flour-stirred before measured (can use half all-purpose and half whole wheat!!)
  1. Dissolve sugar and yeast in the warm water. Let this proof—or sit for a few minutes until it bubbles. Then add salt, oil and 3 cups of flour and beat well. Add in 2½ -3 more cups of flour. The dough should clean off the sides of the bowl and not be too stick – but be careful not to add too much flour. Knead for a few minutes.
  2. Leave the dough in the mixer to rest for 10 minutes and then stir it down (turn on your mixer for 10 seconds) and then allow to rest another 10 minutes. Repeat for a total of 5 times. Then turn dough onto a floured surface and divide into two equal parts. Roll each part into a 9×13 rectangle. Roll dough up, starting from long edge of loaf to seal. Arrange seam side down on large baking sheet that’s been sprinkled with corn meal, allowing room for both loaves. Repeat with second part of dough. With a sharp knife, cut 3 gashes at an angle on the top of each. Cover lightly; allow to rise 30 minutes. Brush entire surface with egg wash (one egg beaten slightly with 1 Tbsp of water). If desired, sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake for 30 minutes at 375 degrees.

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23 Responses to Grandma’s French Bread

  1. brannyboilsover.com says:

    Deborah, what a beautiful loaf of bread! I often find myself in the same situation as you were and never mind baking a loaf for a recipe.

  2. Georgia (The Comfort of Cooking) says:

    My favorite French bread at the local store is on the softer side, too, and I love it. I also love this bread – you did a beautiful job with it! I've been looking for a simple French bread recipe and have finally found one! I'll be giving this a try soon, for sure. Thanks, Deborah!

  3. Joanne says:

    Ever since I started baking my own bread last year, I find it so gratifying that I just can't go back to storebought. This loaf sounds and looks amazing! And even better for you with the whole wheat added in.

  4. kat says:

    Making bread is so much easier than people thing & homemade is always so good!

  5. Melanie says:

    I like soft french bread, too, and I agree that this recipe is forgiving – I'm always messing around with the proportions of white and wheat flour and it always manages to taste delicious. I'm glad it helped you in a pinch – no reason to go to the store for a loaf of bread anymore!

  6. Rosa's Yummy Yums says:

    A lovely loaf! So smooth.



  7. Ann says:

    This loaf looks so wonderful. I want to make a loaf of homemade bread really soon.

  8. Tasha says:

    I do everything I can to arrange for my shopping to be done without my little one. When that's not possible, it definitely requires a less busy time at the store and good organization on my part!

    I want to try to work with yeast more often- other than pizza dough- and this bread looks like a wonderful way to do so!

  9. Kim says:

    I loved this post, but I totally get it. I will do or make just about anything to keep from taking two kids to the store with me. The most complicated of bread recipes are easier than taking children to the store 🙂 Your bread looks fantastic!!

  10. scrambledhenfruit says:

    This is such a pretty loaf of bread! Homemade bread is so much better than store-bought. (And I don't have kids to take to the grocery store any more, but it's a chore all the same.)

  11. Sonia says:

    wonderful loaf of french bread. A big thanks to your grandma for sharing the best recipe… !

  12. Marlis says:

    I've been looking for an easy to make not to chewy bread my kids would like. This one looks like it! I'll be sure to give this a try.

  13. Daphne says:

    When I visited the US last summer, I had -soft- French bread for the first time, and I loved it! So I'm looking forward to try your recipe this weekend. Since I don't have a proper mixer, I guess I'll just have to knead the dough by hand every ten minutes. Oh well!

  14. qutins says:

    This bread was so yummy with minestrone soup! Thank you for this yummy bread:)

  15. Alice Is Lost says:

    Awesome!!!! I made this 2 hours ago… and it's gone! My family swalowed it in a second! we love good bread and this one is just great. Extra soft and great delicate crunch from the outside.

  16. Penny says:

    Currently in the process of making your bread right now! Yours turned out amazing & I can only hope that mine will be the same! Also, your blog is one of the best I’ve ever seen (& believe me…I’ve seen many!) I’ve favorited it & hope to make some more of your recipes very soon! Thank you very much for the bread recipe!! (:

  17. LEn says:

    Made this last night. It was very simple and produced a delicious bread with nice texture and density. My husband and I really enjoyed it and had a loaf left over to share or freeze. Thank you for sharing!

  18. Linda says:

    This recipe sounds sooooooooo yummy. My question is could you use instant yeast and how much? Also , could you just mix it by hand?

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