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Cuban Bread

Yield 3 loaves

Ingredients

  • 6 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 2 packages dry yeast
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • Yellow cornmeal

How to Make It

  1. Combine 2 cups flour and yeast in a large mixing bowl; mix well, and set aside.

  2. Combine water, sugar, and salt in a saucepan; cook over high heat, stirring frequently, until mixture reaches 120° to 130° on candy thermometer. Add to flour mixture; stir until dry ingredients are moistened and dough forms a soft ball. Beat at high speed of an electric mixer 3 minutes or until smooth. Add enough flour to make a stiff dough.

  3. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead 12 minutes or until dough is smooth and elastic.

  4. Place dough in a greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 45 minutes or until dough is doubled in bulk.

  5. Divide dough into 3 portions; roll each portion into a 13- x 10- inch rectangle. Roll up each rectangle jellyroll fashion, starting at long end. Pinch seams and ends together to seal.

  6. Grease 2 baking sheets, and sprinkle lightly with cornmeal. Place loaves, seam side down, on prepared baking sheets.

  7. Cut 4 to 5 diagonal slashes, 3/4-inch-deep, in top of each loaf. Brush with water. Cover and repeat rising procedure 20 minutes or until doubled in bulk. Bake at 400° for 45 minutes (do not preheat oven) or until loaves sound hollow when tapped. Cool bread immediately on wire racks.

  8. Note: Baked loaves may be frozen and thawed for later use.

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