2 1/4-2 3/4 cups flour 1 teaspoon salt 1 tablespoon sugar 1 pkg (2 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast 1 cup warm water (120°F)
In the bowl of a standing mixer, combine 1.5 cups flour with the salt, sugar, and yeast.
Add water and beat for 3 minutes.
Beat in enough additional flour to make a soft but kneadable dough.
Turn dough out onto floured surface…
and knead for 3-5 minutes, or until smooth and elastic.
Place in bowl, cover with tea towel, and let rise 45 minutes (an hour if your house is cold). Punch dough down and roll into a long rectangular shape. Starting from the long end, roll up jelly-roll style.
Place seam-side down on a greased baking sheet, cover with a wet tea towel, and let rise 30-45 minutes, or until doubled. How long this takes will depend on the climate of your house.
(The loaves below are obviously not risen yet).
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. A hot, fully-preheated oven is key for a brown crust, so don’t be tempted to default to 350°F and do wait patiently for your oven to get to temperature.
This next stop is optional…it just makes for a shinier crust:
Whisk one egg white with one tablespoon of water until slightly foamy. Using a pastry brush, gently brush beaten egg white onto loaves.
Using a sharp knife, make 3-4 diagonal slashes on top of the loaf.
These loaves are a bit over-risen…I got busy doing something else and forgot about them. Oops.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until nicely browned. Cool on a wire rack.