We love homemade crusty Italian bread. The smell of a loaf baking is intoxicating. The whole house smells delicious and none of us can actually wait for it to come out of the oven so we can eat it warm with some butter and a fresh cup of coffee. We enjoy it with a variety of things like pasta, and curries. We love it for sandwiches and for making garlic loaf. I am sure you will love it too when you try it.
Ingredients for Crusty Italian Bread
This bread recipe has very few ingredients. All you put in is, yeast, water, sugar, salt, and white flour, and out comes this delicious crusty Italian white loaf.
The Ingredients List for Crusty Italian Bread:
- 1 3/4 cups water – heated to 110 degrees F
- 4 1/2 tablespoons yeast
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 4 1/4 cups bread flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon oil
To make the dough, start with 1 and 3/4 cups of warm water (it should be around 110 degrees F). Place the water in a bowl or measuring cup and add 4 and 1/2 teaspoons of yeast to the bowl. Also, add 1 teaspoon of sugar to it. Sugar helps the yeast bloom. Mix everything well, and let it sit for about 10 mins or until the yeast is bloomed.
Once the yeast has bloomed, we can make the dough. Add 4 and a 1/4 cup of flour to a mixing bowl. Add 1 teaspoon of salt to the flour and mix well, so that the flour and salt are well combined. Pour all of the bloomed yeast into the bowl and mix to form a dough.
Kneading the Dough:
Sprinkle some flour onto a clean counter and turn the dough onto the counter. Knead the dough using the base of your hands for about 6-7 minutes. The dough will become smooth and you will know it is kneaded enough.
The Rising Process:
Place the kneaded dough back into the bowl and cover the entire dough with 1 tablespoon of oil. This is to ensure that the dough doesn’t dry up while it’s sitting and rising. Cover the bowl with a clean tea towel and let it sit for about an hour to allow the dough to rise.
Once the dough has risen, turn it over onto a clean counter and punch the dough once or twice to remove the air bubbles. Divide the dough into two equal parts and roll each part into a ball. Bring the “seams” of the dough to the bottom of the ball and roll it into a loaf shape, again ensuring that the seam is at the bottom and tucked under.
The Second Rise:
Line two baking trays with parchment paper and place each loaf into the middle of one tray. Cover both the loaves with a clean tea towel and let them sit for about 1 hour to allow for a second rise.
Baking the Bread:
Once the loaves have risen, make small slits on the loaves and sprinkle some flour on them. This will give the loaf an artisanal look. It’s not a necessary step, but it gives it a good look. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and place the baking trays into the middle rack of the oven. Bake for about 25 mins or till you see the crust brown.
Remove your baked crusty Italian bread from the oven and let it cool on a rack for about 5 mins. Now you are ready to enjoy some fresh homemade crusty white bread.
- Slice and slather some Home Made Butter on it and enjoy! It goes very well with the savoury and sweet flavours I have.
- Try having it with my Curry Meatballs and I can guarantee you will be in love.
- I thoroughly enjoy it with my Creamy Mushroom Soup. It is a perfect combo for any soup.
To store the loaves, place them in a brown paper bag and then wrap them in a plastic bag to preserve them for a couple of days – that is if they last that long. If you don’t manage to consume the bread within two days, it’s best to store it in the fridge, since it doesn’t have any preservatives.
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Crusty Italian BreadCourse: SideCuisine: ItalianDifficulty: Easy
This crusty Italian bread will become your favorite. The golden crust is crumbly and chewy and the inside is soft. It’s perfect for sandwiches, soups, and curries.
1 3/4 cups water – heated to 110 degrees F
4 1/2 tablespoons yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
4 1/4 cups bread flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon oil
- Add the water to a measuring cup or mixing bowl. Add the yeast and sugar into the bowl and mix well.
- Let the yeast sit for about 10 mins to allow it to bloom.
- Add the flour to a large mixing bowl. Add salt to the flour and mix together so that the salt is evenly distributed.
- Add the bloomed yeast into the flour and mix well to form your dough.
- Turn the dough onto a clean counter space and using the base of your hands, knead the dough for about 6-7 mins. The dough will come together really well and get smooth.
- Place the dough back into the mixing bowl and cover it with the oil – ensure that the oil is spread all over the dough. This is so the dough doesn’t dry up as it rises.
- Cover the bowl with a clean tea towel and let it sit for about 1 hour to allow the dough to rise.
- Once the dough has risen, turn the dough back onto the clean counter and divide it into two equal pieces.
- Roll the dough into even circles and then form two loaf like shapes. Make sure that the seam of the dough is at the bottom of the loaf.
- Place the loaves on two parchment lined baking trays. Cover with clean tea towels and let them sit for another 1 hour to allow the loaves to rise a second time.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Just before placing the loaves into the oven, put small slits on the bread (don’t go too deep) and sprinkle some flour on the loaves. This is not a necessary step, but it gives the bread an artisanal look.
- Bake in the middle rack for about 25 mins or until the crust is browned.
- Enjoy warm with butter. Try it with my curry meatballs and you will love it.
Italian bread is much denser and has a thicker texture and crust. In contrast, White bread is lighter and has a thinner crust. The other difference is the way it is baked. The former is baked on a sheet pan, while the latter is baked in a pan.
The simple ingredients that go into making it are:
– 1 3/4 cups water – heated to 110 degrees F
– 4 1/2 tablespoons of yeast
– 1 teaspoon sugar
– 4 1/4 cups bread flour
– 1 teaspoon of salt
– 1 tablespoon of oil