I've had Panera's and I've had Boudin's, but to be honest, I'm not a big fan of Sourdough. I think the sour flavor interferes with the flavor of the soup. I'd rather have a French Bread Bowl!
|Doesn't that look GOOD?|
French Bread Bowls (adapted from Country Momma Cooks's French Bread Recipe)
1 Packet Yeast
1 Tablespoon Sugar
1 1/2 Cups Warm (not hot) Water
2 teaspoons Salt
2 Tablespoons Butter Flavored Shortening (melted, but not too hot)
4 Cups Flour
In a glass measuring cup, add the Water, Sugar & Yeast. Allow the yeast to Proof (foam up) for 5 minutes.
In your mixer, add the Salt, Shortening, Yeast & 2 Cups of Flour. Mix at low speed for a minute, until well incorporated.
Keeping the mixer on low, slowly add the remaining 2 Cups of Flour until the dough sticks to itself and not the bowl. The dough will still be slightly sticky.
Spread some Flour on your counter-top and knead the dough until it is smooth (about 3 minutes).
In a large bowl, add 2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil. Coat the dough ball with oil, cover and put in a warm place to rise for 60 minutes. (Hint: When I start mixing my dough, I usually turn on the oven to 350 degrees for 1 minute then turn it off. When I'm ready for the dough to rise, I put the covered bowl in the warmed oven).
When the dough has doubled in bulk, cut it into four equal parts.
Shape each part into a ball and place on a greased pan. Cover and let raise for an additional 30 minutes. (Back in the oven, if you wish).
When you're ready to bake, make sure your towel is removed from the oven and bake at 375 degrees for about 20 minutes. (Hint: Put a small pan of water on the bottom rack while your bread is baking. This helps make the crust more crisp.)
To be sure your Bread Bowls are done, check to see that the tops of the breads are golden brown and they have a hollow sound when you knock on them.
Allow the bowls to cool for 10 minutes, cut open the tops, dig out some of the bread inside (to dunk in later) and fill with your favorite creamy soup!
Chesapeake Clam Chowder
1 Package Cream of Potato Soup
2 Cups Water
2 Cups Milk
1/4 Cup Dry Cooking Sherry (this is the secret ingredient)
2 Cans Chopped or Minced Clams
1 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
This couldn't be easier! Simply dump all of the ingredients into a crock pot, stir until the soup mix is dissolved, and cook on the low setting for 5 hours (high setting for 3 hours). Spoon into your Bread Bowl and enjoy!