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French Bread

Cook time 15 mins
Yield 2 (4-inch) loaves
This recipe yields two mini-loaves. Serve one tonight, and store the second loaf in a zip-top plastic bag for later use.


  • 1 1/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons rapid-rise yeast
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup hot water (120° to 130°)
  • 1/4 cup low-fat sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • Vegetable cooking spray
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame seeds

Nutrition Information

  • calories 100
  • caloriesfromfat 12 %
  • fat 1.3 g
  • satfat 0.6 g
  • monofat 0.0 g
  • polyfat 0.0 g
  • protein 3.3 g
  • carbohydrate 18.4 g
  • fiber 0.0 g
  • cholesterol 3 mg
  • iron 0.0 mg
  • sodium 84 mg
  • calcium 0.0 mg

How to Make It

  1. Combine 1/2 cup flour, yeast, sugar, and salt in a medium bowl, stirring well. Gradually add water, sour cream, and vinegar to flour mixture, beating well at low speed of an electric mixer until blended. Beat an additional 2 minutes at medium speed. Gradually stir in enough of the remaining 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons flour to make a soft dough.

  2. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon flour evenly over work surface. Turn dough out onto floured surface, and knead until smooth and elastic (about 8 minutes). Cover and let rest for 10 minutes.

  3. Punch dough down, and knead lightly 4 or 5 times. Divide dough in half. Roll 1 portion of dough into a 4- x 5-inch rectangle. Roll up dough, starting at long side, pressing firmly to eliminate air pockets; pinch ends to seal. Place dough, seam side down, on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Repeat procedure with remaining dough. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 20 minutes or until doubled in bulk.

  4. Gently make 3 or 4 slits, about 1/4-inch deep, diagonally across each loaf, using a sharp knife coated with cooking spray. Combine egg white and 1 tablespoon water; brush loaves with egg white mixture, and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake at 375° for 15 minutes or until loaves are golden and sound hollow when tapped. Remove from baking sheet, and let cool on a wire rack.

Cooking Light Light Cooking for Two