Friday, 10 January 2014

Home-baked Ciabatta

First of all, a very Happy New year to you all! Hope you had wonderful holiday season. Our holidays were so fantastic that I nearly did not want it to end. Much worse, after eating so much calorie-rich food for the holidays, we did not want to cook or eat again for another few years! But it never quite works like that and we were hungry again quite soon. So we decided to stick to simple food and sandwiches for the next couple of weeks. So that is one of the reasons I did not get much to write about in here. But today I got to try Ciabatta bread -which by the way is my favourite kind of bread. Personally, I love the crusty outside, extra-soft inside with those varying sizes of beautiful holes. I could it with pretty much anything, although, I tend to favour savoury food. With Anjalie wanting to help with the kneading of the bread I decided to try baking Ciabatta together with her. We are very pleased with how it has come out, which according to her is "perfect!" I did not need any further praise tbh, but, even my hubby who usually does not care for crusty breads said he enjoyed it and wants this exact same recipe repeated often. So I am one very pleased lady here. I have followed the measurements etc from BBC's Paul Hollywood continental recipes. Link here. But I just followed my own method that suits both Anjalie & my schedule.

You will need:
400 g white bread flour
300 ml water
1 tsp salt
2 tsp yeast
30 ml olive oil

The night before you bake, mix 200 g of flour with 1 tsp yeast and 150 ml water ((half of what is given the ingredients list). Cover with a damp tea towel and leave in a warm, dry, place at least for 6 hrs. We did for 10 hrs (that is how long Anjalie sleeps at night).

Next day, mix the remaining 200 g flour, 1 tsp salt, 30 ml olive oil with the preferment and 150 ml water. Knead well for 6-10 mins (either by hand or using bread machine at dough setting). I used bread machine since I had to work. Leave to raise for 45 mins to 1 hr (or until the machine beeps).

Divide dough into two pieces and place in loaf pans greased with olive oil. Do not worry about shaping. It will be very hard to shape this dough since it has water to flour ratio of 80%. Cover and leave to raise for 30 mins.

Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius.

Bake for 30 mins. The loaves should sound hollow when tapped on the bottom. Cool on wire racks.

These loaves have longer shelf life than other non preferment treated breads. They are crusty on the outside, but super soft on the inside. They can be used for sandwiches, making bruschetta or panini.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for visiting and taking the time and effort to leave a comment.