Boule Bread Recipe

AuthorSteve Nubie
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Boule Bread is a traditional French recipe.  It is an artisanal bread with a thick, dark crust and the coarse texture of artisan baking.  It is a very complicated bread to make from a baking perspective especially as it relates to the rising process, but your bread machine can make part of the process easier using the basic dough setting.  The dough is then allowed to rise over a period of time and baked in the oven in a covered Dutch oven for part of the baking process. 

Parchment paper is very important to the baking process because it will allow you to lift the risen and unbaked dough and lower it into the preheated Dutch oven before baking, and also make removal of the baked loaf from the Dutch oven. 

Boule bread is wonderful with soups and stews; a great bread for dipping into olive oil, and a perfect accompaniment for any hearty meal.  It’s a good bread for sandwiches and will contain a variety of ingredients, toppings and condiments due to the firm yet elastic texture and crust. 

INGREDIENTS:
 1 ½ teaspoons of salt
 ¾ cup of flat beer at room temperature
 ¾ cup of water at 110 degrees Fahrenheit/43 degrees Celsius
 2 ½ teaspoons of yeast
 4 cups of bread flour or unbleached all-purpose flour
 1 ½ teaspoons of apple cider vinegar
 1 egg yolk whisked for glaze
DIRECTIONS:
1

Add the ingredients to the bread pan in the order indicated in the ingredient list. Select the basic dough setting and start. If the dough looks too loose, add a tablespoon of flour and give it a minute. If it looks too dry, add a tablespoon of warm water and once again give it a minute until you have a dough ball consistency.

2

When the dough setting is complete, remove the dough to a sheet of parchment paper on a baking sheet, dust the top with flour and cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 2 hours.

3

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F./176 degrees Celsius.

4

Whisk the egg and brush the top of the dough after it has risen.

5

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes at 350 degrees F./176 degrees Celsius.

6

Let cool for 10 minutes, slice and serve.

Ingredients

INGREDIENTS:
 1 ½ teaspoons of salt
 ¾ cup of flat beer at room temperature
 ¾ cup of water at 110 degrees Fahrenheit/43 degrees Celsius
 2 ½ teaspoons of yeast
 4 cups of bread flour or unbleached all-purpose flour
 1 ½ teaspoons of apple cider vinegar
 1 egg yolk whisked for glaze

Directions

DIRECTIONS:
1

Add the ingredients to the bread pan in the order indicated in the ingredient list. Select the basic dough setting and start. If the dough looks too loose, add a tablespoon of flour and give it a minute. If it looks too dry, add a tablespoon of warm water and once again give it a minute until you have a dough ball consistency.

2

When the dough setting is complete, remove the dough to a sheet of parchment paper on a baking sheet, dust the top with flour and cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 2 hours.

3

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F./176 degrees Celsius.

4

Whisk the egg and brush the top of the dough after it has risen.

5

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes at 350 degrees F./176 degrees Celsius.

6

Let cool for 10 minutes, slice and serve.

Boule Bread Recipe

Steve Nubie

Steve Nubie has been writing professionally for 38 years. He is a Chef and has traveled across Asia and Europe studying language, culture and cuisine. He instructs culinary classes in the Culinary School at the College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn, Illinois and has written extensively on cuisine, cooking, diet and nutrition. He is a published author of 10 books including a cookbook and continues to write on subjects related to culinary trends.

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3 Comments
  1. Reply
    Chris July 15, 2018 at 5:10 pm

    HI Steve. You need to add an instruction for putting the bread into the Dutch oven. I’m assuming I put the Dutch oven in the oven when I turn it on so that it’s hot. Do I cut the parchment paper once it goes into the Dutch oven, or leave the ends sticking out?
    I’m going to try making this bread in the next few days, later in the afternoon when I have an open beer. 🙂
    Thanks.

    • Reply
      Chris July 19, 2018 at 8:08 pm

      I made the bread with a dark beer. The dough looked good in the bread machine (all the flour was mixed in, dough was not runny) but neither was it firm when it came out, so when it rose on the parchment paper on the baking tray, it expanded in all directions and lost some of its height. I had covered it with plastic wrap. The dough stuck to the wrap a bit when I peeled the wrap off, but I was able to scrape that dough back onto the bread dough.

      I re-read the intro and saw that the bread goes into a heated Dutch oven, so I put the Dutch oven in when I turned on the oven, about 45 minutes before the bread was due to finish rising. I could likely have put it in an hour before so that it was really hot. (The oven was up to temperature though, by the time I put the bread in.)

      I did not cut the parchment paper, but I needed another pair of hands to get the sticky, large dough mass into the hot Dutch oven.

      Overall the bread turned out well. The flavour is very good and the crust and crumb are chewy, which is what I was looking for. It made a low loaf (e.g. not sandwich bread per se), but that’s ok for eating with olive oil. I like the coarse texture. It is excellent toasted. I will make this again.

  2. Reply
    Janet July 11, 2018 at 2:59 pm

    So happy to find your recipe for boul e bread! Making it today.

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