What is a Baguette?

Baguettes are loaves of bread closely connected to France that do not have a standardized shape and size. Typically, they are 2-3 inches in diameter, and about 2 feet in length. Some bakeries make baguettes as long as six feet. Baguettes have a high crust to crumb ratio, therefore, it loses a high percentage of moisture during baking, and  may over bake easily.


The origins of the baguette are uncertain, but it is generally accepted that it was first made in Vienna as an adaptation of another type of bread. Baguettes then became popular when the French government mandated that bakers not be allowed to work before 4:00 a.m., thus bakers had to make a bread that would bake faster for the breakfast rush. Over the years, the baguette became a symbol of France, with a revival in the 1990s.


A typical Baguette formula looks like this:

  • Prep time: 2 hours 30 mins
  • Cook time: 25 mins
  • Total time: 2 hours 55 mins
  • Serves: 13 (350g loaves)


  • 1.77kg Bread flour
  • 2.05kg Water
  • 0.01kg Yeast (dry)
  • 0.05kg Salt
  • 0.01kg Malt
  • 1.75kg Poolish


  1. Mix in a horizontal dough mixer on first speed for 2 minutes.
  2. Mix on second speed for 7-8 minutes, or until dough is half developed (this is called an improved mix). Dough should be about 75oF (24oC).
  3. Ferment for 60 minutes.
  4. Divide into 0.35kg (12 oz) pieces and shape into a slight rectangle.
  5. Rest for 25 minutes.
  6. Roll out into a 2 ft baguette.
  7. Proof it for a final 60 minutes at 27oC (80oF) at 65% RH.
  8. Score the top of the loaves.
  9. Bake it in the deck oven with steam for the first 2 minutes, and then at 238oC (460oF) for 20-30 minutes. Remove from oven and cool on racks for 20 minutes before packaging in bread bags.