Crusty French Loaf Recipe
Crusty French Loaf Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Crusty French Loaf Recipe

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A delicate texture makes this bread absolutely wonderful. I sometimes use the dough to make breadsticks, which I brush with melted butter and sprinkle with garlic powder.
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. + rising Bake: 25 min. + cooling
MAKES:16 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. + rising Bake: 25 min. + cooling
MAKES: 16 servings


  • 1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water (110° to 115°)
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 3 to 3-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • Cornmeal
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 teaspoon cold water

Nutritional Facts

1 slice: 109 calories, 2g fat (trace saturated fat), 0mg cholesterol, 225mg sodium, 20g carbohydrate (2g sugars, 1g fiber), 3g protein


  1. In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the sugar, oil, salt and 2 cups flour. Beat until blended. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a stiff dough.
  2. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour. Punch dough down; return to bowl. Cover and let rise for 30 minutes.
  3. Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface. Shape into a 16-in. x 2-1/2-in. loaf with tapered ends. Sprinkle a greased baking sheet with cornmeal; place loaf on baking sheet. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 25 minutes.
  4. Beat egg white and cold water; brush over dough. With a sharp knife, make diagonal slashes 2 in. apart across top of loaf. Bake at 375° for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pan to a wire rack to cool. Yield: 1 loaf (16 slices).
Originally published as Crusty French Bread in Best of Country Breads 2000, p50

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Reviewed Mar. 13, 2016

"Made it exactly as directed. Perfect!! Great texture, lovely brown slightly crunchy crust."

Reviewed Feb. 18, 2014

"Easy and yummy"

Reviewed Aug. 29, 2013

"Great recipe. I have used it several times always turns out perfectly."

Reviewed Apr. 28, 2012

"This was my first time making bread and it was easy! It turned out great and was delicious! I took the advice from the other reviewers and doubled the recipe and froze the 2nd loaf, also I didnt have any cornmeal on hand so I skipped that and it still turned out great :)"

Reviewed Feb. 22, 2012

"Wonderful bread. Seems silly to make just one loaf so I make a double recipe. Great with Meatballs, or anything you want a good slice of bread with. Only problem with making this is that there are no leftovers!"

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