Combining sweet and savory flavors in one satisfying loaf, this Herb & Honey French Bread is sure to please everyone at the table!
I don’t know what it is about this time of year, but I just can’t stop myself from gorging myself on allofthecarbs.
Every year, after the holidays, I tell myself that I am going to get my act together and start eating right.
Instead, I continually snack on leftover cookies, candies, and, of course, anything bread related.
For real, one of the husband’s co-workers gave us a ton of Almond Roca about a week before Christmas, and as of today I’ve consumed all 63 pieces and 13,200 calories that came in the box.
Ohmygawd, I cannot believe that I just, a) took the time to calculate that, and, b) actually ate that much Roca.
I think it’s becoming a bit of a problem. The husband (who loves giving me nicknames) has started calling me the Roca Beast. I’ll consider that a term of endearment.
Alright, after that nauseating display of nickname affection and hardcore Roca addiction, I should probably move on and start telling you about this bread.
You guys, THIS BREAD.
It’s my crowning achievement in the bread department. My carby magnum opus, you could say.
It’s sweet. It’s savory. It’s crusty on the outside and fluffy on the inside. It’s everything a loaf of bread should be.
AND. Here’s the best part. It’s really, really, easy to make.
Here’s the low-down:
- First, dump a bunch of ingredients into a bowl and mix with a spatula. Then, walk away and drink a cup of coffee for 15 minutes.
- Next, knead the dough for 5 minutes by stand mixer.
- Cover it, and let it rise for an hour. Dump it out onto a piece of parchment paper, cut it in half, and form into two loaves.
- Let the loaves rise for one more hour, then dust with flour, make a few slices on top for the purdyness factor, then bake for 30 minutes.
I know, I know, I know. No one likes waiting for bread to rise. But trust me when I say that it is WORTH it. Your house is going to smell like a freakin’ Parisian bakery.
If you don’t need two loaves of bread all at once, freeze half of the dough when you divide it in step 3, above. Plus, since you froze half of the dough for another day, the next time you’re in need of a loaf of bread just let it thaw in the fridge overnight.
Take it out and give it 15 minutes on the counter to come to room temperature (another coffee break, anyone?). Punch it down, shape it into a loaf, and let it rise for an hour before flouring, slicing, and baking.
When I bake bread, I like to place a second baking sheet on the bottom rack of the oven while it preheats. Once I put my bread in the oven to bake, I take a glass of water and quickly pour it onto the hot baking sheet and close the oven door right away. The steam created by the water and the hot pan helps the bread come out extra crusty.
Recommended Bread Making Gear
- Stand Mixer with Dough Hook
- Spatula (I prefer silicone, like this set)
- Parchment Paper
- Baking Sheet (I like the size of these half-sheets)
- Cooling Rack
Here’s Your Recipe!
- 1 tablespoon active yeast
- 5 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 cups lukewarm water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon caraway seed
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
- Place all of the ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer. Use a spatula to roughly combine all of the ingredients. Let rest for 15 minutes.
- Attach the dough hook to the stand mixer and knead on medium for 5 minutes. Cover and let rise for 60 minutes.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Punch down the dough, transfer to the lined baking sheet, and divide in half. Shape each half into a loaf and let rise for another 60 minutes.
- Place a second baking sheet on the bottom rack of your oven and preheat to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Dust the loaves with a sprinkling of flour and use a serrated knife to make three cuts on the top of each loaf.
- Transfer the loaves on the lined baking sheet to the middle rack of the preheated oven. Carefully pour about a cup of water onto the hot baking pan on the bottom rack. Quickly close the oven door. Bake for 30 minutes.
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