What is the difference between French bread and Italian bread?
The best answer I can seem to find (other than the smart answer “the name!”) is that the difference is the shape of the loaf. French bread is long and thin, while Italian bread is a larger, shorter loaf. Otherwise, the ingredients and the methods seem to be virtually the same… If anyone knows a better answer, please share!
My boyfriend and I decided to have a classy snack of brie, French bread, grapes, pear, and a little leftover cranberry Wensleydale from our trip to Zionsville a few weeks back. In preparation, I made the French bread, from this recipe. The method with the boiling water in the oven seemed interesting, so I chose this recipe over the 10 billion+ other French bread recipes out there.
I couldn’t decide whether to make a regular loaf or a whole wheat loaf…so I made both! I simply cut the flour amount in half, and split the yeast mixture between the two bowls. Note: For the whole wheat loaf, instead of using 1 3/4 c whole wheat flour, I only used 1 1/2. And it was still a little dry, so maybe start with 1 1/4 c whole wheat flour?
I already knew that the heavier whole wheat flour would need less flour and more proofed yeast. However, I believe these pictures show the difference much more dramatically.
I would like to think that these loaves depict what happens if you eat them. If you eat lots of refined, bleached, all-purpose flour, then you will be big, expansive, pale, and doughy. If you eat lots of whole wheat flour, then you will be long, lean, thin, and toned. …I can always hope, right?
Now for the classy mini-meal: