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Giamona & Cartwright Families...

Italian Bread
Paul R. Giamona 

     2 packages dry yeast
     2 1/4 cups 120 degree water
     6 1/4-7 cups unbleached flour
     1/4 cup oil
     1 T. sugar
     1 T. salt
     1-2 T. milk
     sesame seeds 

     1. Combine 3 cups of flour, yeast, sugar, and salt in a large bowl.
     2. Add the water to the dry ingredients.
     3. Mix.
     4. Gradually add the remaining flour, working it in by hand if necessary.
     5. Knead for about 15 minutes.
     6. Place dough into a warm bowl that has been greased with butter or oil.
     7. Turn dough to coat, cover with plastic wrap, and place in a warm place to rise.
     8. When double (about 30 minutes to 1 hour), punch down and let rise a second time.
     9. When double, remove from bowl.  Work and knead the dough for 5-10 minutes.
    10. Cut the dough into 2 equal portions. Let sit for about 10 minutes.
    11.  Stretch dough and fold top 1/3 unto the middle and the bottom 1/3 unto the top.  Repeat folding from side to side.  Repeat this step 2-3 times.
    12. Form into 2 loaves.
    13. Place loaves on a baking sheet covered lightly with corn meal.
    14. Cover and let rise until double.
    15. Brush loaves with milk and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
    16. Score loaves with a very sharp knife.
    17. Bake at 425 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until brown and crusty.
    18. Spray oven with water during baking or place a pan of boiling water in the bottom of the oven.