Pane Italiano For my friend Rita

My friend Rita, and her daughter Sarah, recently returned from an Italian vacation. This bread’s for them!

I woke up this morning and decided to cut the Next Up list in Dede’s Bakery and Confectionary list with Italian bread. This loaf has a nice crumb, open structure, good chewy crust and great taste. “ ‘O sole mio!”

Italian Bread

• 2 ¼ tsp (7g) active dry yeast
• 1 ¾ c (413g) warm water
• 1 tsp (4g) sugar
• 3 ¼ c (455g) bread flour
• 2 tsp (12g) salt
• 1 egg white


  1. In the bowl of your stand mixer, mix your yeast, warm water, and sugar. Allow the mixture to sit until the yeast becomes frothy, about 5 minutes.
  2. Once the yeast is ready, add the flour and salt to the bowl. using the dough hook attachment, mix on low speed until the dough comes together, about 3-4 minutes. Increase the speed to medium and mix it for 3-5 minutes to develop the gluten. Add additional flour by the Tbl until the dough barely cleans the sides of the bowl.
  3. Once the dough is done mixing, remove it from the mixer and place it into an oiled bowl. Cover and let the dough rest until it has doubled in size, about 1 hour. Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper. It should weigh ~862g.
  4. Dump the dough out onto a floured surface and pound the air out of it, fold it back in on itself into a round and place it back into the bowl, seam side down. Cover and let it rest for another 30-40 minutes.
  5. Once it has rested and risen back up again, dump it out onto a lightly floured surface and degas it again. Cut the dough in half and toll them both up into 10 inch baguette-like loaves. Place the loaves onto your prepared baking sheet, seam side down and cover them. Preheat your oven to 375F.
  6. Whisk egg white and 1 tbl water to use as an egg wash
  7. Proof your loaves until they are nearly double in size about 30-45 minutes. Once the loaves are ready, score your loaves and bake them for 25-30 minutes After the first 15 minutes brush egg wash on the bread, sprinkle with sesame seeds and return to finish baking.
  8. They should have a light golden crust and bake to interior temp of 190F.

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