It's really a must-have staple recipe in every home cook's repertoire. Once you go homemade, you'll never want to go back to that store-bought bagged loaf again. Because nothing in the world compares with a hot, steamy, crusty loaf of soft french bread coming out of your oven.
5 cups all purpose flour* + up to 1/2 cup more
Pour the warm water into a small bowl (I use a 4-cup Pyrex measuring cup). Sprinkle the yeast over the water. Sprinkle the sugar and the salt over the yeast. Add the oil. Let water sit for about 5 minutes until the yeast is foamy (see this post on how to proof yeast).