1) In a large bowl, stir together the flour, 1 cup of water, yeast, and salt until thoroughly combined, adding additional water if necessary to make a soft dough. Cover the bowl and let the dough rest for 30 minutes.
2) Knead the dough — by hand, mixer, or bread machine — until smooth. Transfer it to a lightly greased bowl, cover, and let rise until doubled in bulk, about 1 1/2 hours.
3) Fold the dough over onto itself several times. Return it to the bowl, cover, and let rise until doubled in bulk again, about 1 1/2 hours.
4) Transfer the dough to a lightly greased work surface and divide it into three pieces.
5) Stretch the dough pieces into 15" to 18" long loaves, and place them on a lightly greased or parchment-lined baking sheet; or into a lightly greased baguette pan. Cover the loaves and let them rise for about 1 hour.
6) Preheat the oven to 450°F.
7) Slash the loaves diagonally, and generously spray them with warm water.
8) Bake the baguettes for 20 to 25 minutes, or until they're a deep golden brown. Remove them from the oven, slip them off the pan, and return them to the oven rack. Turn the oven off, and crack the door open about 1". Allow the baguettes to cool fully in the oven.
Yield: three 15" to 18" baguettes.