I met a few friends for breakfast one morning (our husbands work together) and Nicole brought us each a loaf of this amazing French bread. It was so soft and delicious. Would you believe that three out of the four of us lived in the same town across the country not many years ago? It's the smallest world ever!
nicole's french bread (my friend Nicole W.)
2 1/2 cups very warm water
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon salt
2 tablespoons oil
6 cups flour
2 tablespoons yeast
Pour all ingredients except half of the flour (3 cups) into the bowl of a standing mixer. Beat vigorously 2 to 3 minutes using the wisk attachment. Stir in remaining flour except 1/4 cup. Let rest in warm place for 10 minutes. Gently fold down dough using a spoon. Repeat until you have folded down the dough 5 times. After the final 10 minutes roll out onto lightly floured surface, using the remaining 1/4 cup flour. Lightly handle into long roll. Cut dough into four pieces. Roll each piece into a small rectangle. Roll each rectangle jelly roll style tapering the ends. Brush tops with olive oil and sea salt. Make 3 to 4 snips on the tops with kitchen shears. Bake at 375 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes.
What Nicole has to say- you can bake them in French bread pans instead of on parchment paper like she did.