I had wanted to fit this recipe in my 'Things I discovered' post but I ended up singing the praises of Evo3 Extra Virgin Organic Olive Oil so much that I ran out of time. So here it is instead.
I never knew that making ciabatta was so simple. After seeing the attempts on Bake Off making various doughs- remembering that ciabatta was a 'wet dough' and needed lots of 'holes' in it once baked; Remembering the horror of Catherine's face in 2012 bake off when her dough (not ciabatta dough but still dough nonetheless) ended up on the floor and led to that now famous quote about "not serving Mary Berry green carpet!" I had never even contemplated attempting such a thing until a few weeks when I got a craving for some ciabatta and thought I'd just give it a go and see what happened.
Turned out to be really simple to make and turns out amazing every time. We went on to make it again the day after and the day after that and several times since. Be warned, like most fresh bread, this is extremely moreish warm out the oven so you will end up eating it in one go!
Tastes great when made using the Evo3 Extra Virgin Olive Oil (although that tastes so great that it feels a crime to use it in cooking!) and tastes great dipped into the olive oil too to eat.
500g Strong bread flour
450ml luke warm water
half a sachet of dried yeast (my sachets are 7g each so 3.5g is needed)
half a teaspoon of sugar
One and half a teaspoon of salt
1. Pre-heat oven to 190C.
2. I used a mixer with a dough hook to mix the flour, sugar and yeast, then added the water and salt. You could do this by hand if you don't have a mixer. Remember ciabatta is a really wet dough so it will look sticky and wet.
3. Then oil a surface with olive oil and oil your hands. This is to stop the dough from sticking. Using oil instead of flour helps because it is a wet dough and using flour would get absorbed into it and dry it out too much.
4. Next you need to 'knead' the dough with lots of stretching and slapping down movements. I did lots of scooping part of it up in my hands then slapping it down. You are trying to make lots of lovely air pockets in it by doing this.
5. Grease a bowl with a little olive oil and place the dough in it adding a little more oil on top of the dough.
6. Cover with cling film and leave to rise for around an hour. You are looking for it to roughly double in size.
7. Flour a baking tray well and oil a work surface with olive oil. Then tip the dough onto your oiled work surface. It will sort of spread out. With oiled hands, lift half of it and fold it lengthways onto itself. This should look like a ciabatta-ish shape but still quite floppy.
|Don't be alarmed if it spreads out and goes floppy - remember it is a wet dough|
8. Now lift the dough onto your well-floured baking tray and bake in the oven for around 30-35 minutes at 190C. Lifting the dough onto the baking tray can be a bit tricky because it is so floppy so keep the baking tray close by and try to move the dough quickly across. I oiled my hands before doing this too, to stop it sticking to me.
|This is it 'folded' in half lengthways. It still looks flat and floppy.|
Miss T often likes to help and she makes a mini-ciabatta of her own:
Linking up with Raisie Bay's Kids in the Kitchen: