French Bread Rolls Recipe
1 package active dry yeast
2 cups warm (105-115°F) water
1 tsp sugar
2 tsp salt
5-1/2 to 6 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
Step 1: Sprinkle yeast over 1/4 cup of the warm water in large bowl of electric mixer. Add sugar. Let stand until yeast is soft (about 5 minutes).
Step 2: Stir in remaining 1-3/4 cups water and salt. Add 4 cups of the flour. Mix to blend then beat at medium speed until smooth and elastic (about 5 minutes).
Step 3: Gradually beat in about 1 cup more flour to make a soft dough.
Step 4: Turn dough out onto a board or pastry cloth floured with some of the remaining 1/2-1 cup flour. Knead until dough is springy and small bubbles form just under surface (10-15 minutes), adding just enough more flour to prevent dough from being sticky.
Step 5: Turn dough in a greased bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and a towel; let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk (about 1 hour).
Step 6: Punch dough down; knead dough lightly into a ball. Cover with inverted bowl and let rest for 10 minutes.
Step 7: Divide dough into 18 equal portions. Knead and roll each into a ball, then use the palms of both hands to roll from either side to taper and elongate the ends (each roll should be about 5” long and 2” wide at centre).
Step 8: Place shaped rolls well apart on greased baking sheets. Let rise until puffy but not quite doubled (15-20 minutes).
Step 9: Preheat oven to 450°F. Using a razor blade, slash each roll down centre about 1/2” deep, almost from end to end.
Step 10: Bake for 25-30 minutes or until brown. Spray the top of the rolls with water after the first 3 minutes of baking and again after the second 3 minutes.