90-Minute Italian Bread
Breads, Here's What's Cooking, Recipes

90-Minute Italian Bread

90-Minute Italian Bread

Finally, a weekend when I finally felt I didn’t need to run around and around like a decapitated chicken. I actually had time to do some real pen-and-paper writing, sleep in until 9, AND go to the temple with Matt and our dear friends The Roses. Not to mention get a little fancy with my baking, watch The Princess Bride, and get some good cuddling time with the hubby.

It’s been a great weekend.

I won’t lie, it was a little hard to come into work this morning. However, that pain was lessened slightly by the fact that I get Thursday and Friday off this week. Can I get a WAHOO from the crowd?

And, because this bread recipe was requested the last time I posted about it, I’ve decided to oblige.

What makes this bread recipe particularly noteworthy is just how QUICK it is—many times, with bread recipes calling for yeast, you have to have quite a long time to wait while the dough rises. This one only has two short rising times and then bakes for a half hour. If you let it rise on the shorter side (as I do), you can have the whole thing completed in under an hour and a half!

This is also a good recipe to try if you’re just getting started making homemade bread since you just form the loaves freehand and don’t have to be too fussy for them to turn out really good.

Definitely worth a try!

Note: There are affiliate links below, which means I may get a small commission on any purchases made, at no extra cost to you.

90-Minute Italian Bread

Italian Bread

(modified slightly from The Food Nanny Rescues Dinner)

3 cups warm water
1 1/2 tablespoons (2 packets) active dry yeast
2 tablespoons plus 1/2 teaspoon sugar, divided
1 tablespoon salt
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, melted
7 to 9 cups all-purpose flour, divided

1 egg white

  • In a small bowl, combine the water, yeast, and 1/2 teaspoon of the sugar. Stir just until the yeast is dissolved. Let stand until the mixture is bubbly or foamy, 5 to 10 minutes.
  • In a large mixing bowl or in the bowl of a heavy-duty mixer, mix the salt, the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar, butter, the yeast mixture, and 3 1/2 cups of the flour. Keep adding flour, 1/2 cup at a time, up to 3 1/2 cups, for a total of 7 cups. The dough should be firm and completely away from the sides of the bowl. If the dough is still sticky, add more flour 1/4 cup at a time, up to the remaining two cups.
  • Knead by hand on a lightly floured surface or with the dough hook on low to medium speed, about 10 minutes. Transfer the dough to a large, lightly greased bowl, and turn it once to coat. Cover with a dish towel and let the dough rise in a warm place away from drafts, until doubled in bulk (20-40 minutes). Grease a baking sheet or sheet pan, and set aside.
  • Punch down the dough and divide in half. On a lightly floured surface, form each half into a thick baguette shape, about 10 inches long. Place the loaves on the prepared pan. With a sharp knife, make three angled 1/2″ deep slashes on the top of each loaf. Beat the egg white with a fork, and brush it over the loaves. Sprinkle with the sesame seeds, if desired. Let loaves rise, uncovered, until doubled in bulk, 20-40 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees. When the dough has doubled, bake for 30 minutes. For a crispier crust, spray water in the oven with a spray bottle before baking and again a few times during baking.
  • Turn the loaves out onto a cooling rack. Serve the bread hot with butter or olive oil if desired, or allow to cool.

Yield: 2 giant loaves

Note: If you mix the egg white with a little water, it will brush on a little easier and not glob so easily together.

90-Minute Italian Bread

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