French Bread

Servings: 4 large loaves

4 1/2 cups very warm water, 115°F
1 Tablespoon sugar or honey
1 1/2 Tablespoons salt
2 Tablespoons yeast
9-10 cups Prairie Gold whole wheat white flour

1. Place the very warm water, sugar, salt, and about half of the flour in electric mixer bowl. Using the dough hook, mix until smooth.
2. Add the 2 Tbsp. yeast and mix.
3. With mixer running on low speed continue adding remainder of flour until a stiff dough is formed. Knead on low until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes.
4. With mixer lid on, let the dough rise until light. Punch dough down by turning on to low speed for a few seconds.
5. Remove dough from bowl and separate into 4 portions. Let rest 15 minutes.
6. Shape into long oval loaves, and place on greased baking sheets. Score loaves diagonally with long, shallow cuts using a sharp knife. Brush with a glaze made of ½ cup water and 1 tsp. cornstarch. Sprinkle with sesame seed if desired.
7. Cover and let rise 30 minutes.
8. Bake in a 400°F oven until golden brown and done, about 35-45 minutes.
9. Spray loaves with water (using spray bottle) once or twice during the baking for crisper crust. Store in paper bags to keep crusts crisp.