How to Bake Authentic French Bread

If you’re looking to bake authentic French bread, here are the steps to guide you through the process:


– 500g all-purpose flour

– 10g salt

– 10g sugar

– 10g active dry yeast

– 375ml warm water


Activate the yeast:

In a small bowl, dissolve the yeast and sugar in warm water. Let it sit for about 5 minutes until it becomes frothy and activates.

Mix the dry ingredients: In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour and salt. Make a well in the center.

Mix the dough:

Pour the activated yeast mixture into the well of the flour. Gradually incorporate the flour into the liquid, mixing with a wooden spoon or your hands until a sticky dough forms.

Knead the dough: Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and knead it for about 10 minutes until it becomes smooth and elastic. If the dough is too sticky, add a little more flour as needed.

First rise:

Place the dough in a clean, lightly oiled bowl, cover it with a kitchen towel, and let it rise in a warm, draft-free place for about 1-2 hours or until it doubles in size.

Shape the dough: Once the dough has risen, gently punch it down to release the air. Transfer it to a floured surface and shape it into a loaf by folding the sides towards the center and rolling it tightly.

Second rise: Place the shaped dough on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Cover it with a kitchen towel and let it rise for another 30-40 minutes until it puffs up slightly.

Preheat the oven: Meanwhile, preheat your oven to 230°C (450°F). Place an empty baking dish or tray at the bottom of the oven to create steam during baking.

Score the bread: Using a sharp knife or a bread lame, make diagonal slashes on the top of the bread. This scoring allows the bread to expand properly during baking.

Bake the bread: Transfer the risen loaf to the preheated oven and bake for about 20-25 minutes until the bread turns golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.

Cool and enjoy: Remove the bread from the oven and let it cool on a wire rack before slicing. Enjoy the crusty exterior and soft, airy interior of your homemade authentic French bread.

Remember, baking bread takes practice, so don’t worry if your first attempt isn’t perfect. With each batch, you’ll gain more experience, and soon enough, you’ll be baking fantastic French bread!