One of my favorite holiday foods are the wide assortment of dips, cheese balls and spreads available at gatherings and parties. I prefer to enjoy them with a good loaf of fresh baked bread. Yes, I might love carbs even more than I love sweets.
One treat in our home is fresh baked baguettes of deep sourdough. This time around I tried out Pompeian's new 100% Grapeseed Oil All-Natural Cooking Spray for all my bread baking needs.
I like to always have a sourdough started fed and ready to use. I kept one going for years, then lost it when my daughter was born and I became a little more overwhelmed. It really isn't hard to keep healthy, you just can't ignore it for months on end. I prefer to feed mine weekly.
I like to knead my bread in the stand mixer when possible. It saves me a little time and really does a bang-up job. I still love the zen-like feeling of kneading, but some days there isn't time.
The big secret to my baguette? Getting the right amount of flour and really working the gluten strands. See the smooth dough? See the sides of my mixing bowl? The dough is still very tacky and will stick to my hands, so to handle it I spray a little nonstick spray on my fingers.
I was very impressed with the new Pompeian brand cooking spray. I haven't had many chances to use grapeseed oil in my kitchen. The spray was a nice, fine mist that easily coated my hands, pans and dough as needed. The Grapeseed oil was light in flavor and I know it is healthy for me. Grapeseed oil has a high smoking point so it is a great choice for baking.
After kneading I lightly sprayed my dough bucket with oil and let the sourdough double in size. Despite the cold weather, my healthy sourdough culture helped to expand my dough in under an hour. I was so pleased.
For the final rise I also lightly sprayed the pan and then set my dough in to rise. After it reached the ideal size, I slashed the tops, brushed each loaf with egg wash and sprayed the top with just a little more Grapeseed oil.
The loaves were lovely and tasted fabulous! Nothing like warm, tangy sourdough on a cold Winter day. The outside crust protects the soft and fluffy bread inside. I love to enjoy a thick slice with homemade jam, a little sharp cheddar or spread with spinach artichoke dip.
Give this easy recipe a try. Bread might sound complicated, but it really isn't. Just follow the directions carefully and you will be enjoying the smell of the corner bakery in your own kitchen.
My Favorite Sourdough Baguette
You Will Need:
- 2 c. sourdough starter, freshly fed
- 1 1/3 c. lukewarm water
- 5-6 c. of flour
- 2 tsp. salt
- 2 tsp. sugar
- 4 tsp. yeast
- 4 tsp. vital wheat gluten
- 1 Tbsp. potato flour
- 1 egg yolk + 1 Tbsp. water for egg wash
- Pompeian Grapeseed Oil All-Natural Cooking Spray
In a stand mixer, combine the sourdough starter, water and 3 cups of flour. Mix well. Then add in the sugar, salt, yeast, gluten, potato flour and at least 2 cups more of flour. Turn the mixer on medium using the pig-tail attachment for the best kneading. Knead for 5 minutes straight.
The dough should start to come together and pull away from the sides of the bowl. If the dough still sticks, add another 1/4 c. of flour. The dough should still be tacky to the touch, but the bowl should be clean.
Spray a dough rising bucket or large bowl with Pompeian Grapeseed Oil All-Natural Cooking Spray and put in the dough. The dough should double in size in an hour or two. Then divide into thirds for baguettes. I like to bake mine on a special baguette pan, but you also form them and put them on a non-stick mat for the second rise. Spray the tops of the formed loaves with more grapeseed oil, cover in kitchen film and let rise for one hour.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
Using a baker's lame, lightly slash the tops of the loaves, brush lightly with egg wash and then spray a little Pompeian Grapeseed Oil All-Natural Cooking Spray on top. Bake for 20 minutes, until the tops of the Baguettes are golden brown.
Let the loaves cool completely on a rack before slicing.
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