Simple Wood-Fired Ciabatta Bread Recipe

August 18, 2016

Simple Wood-Fired Ciabatta Bread Recipe

Ciabatta bread made in a wood-fired brick oven

Out of all the wonderful food you can make with our Four Grand-Mere brick ovens, we love sharing bread recipes.  Our customer Laura in Pennsylvania, made a batch of ciabatta bread with a simple recipe she shared with us that we can't keep to ourselves.

Recipe:

Ciabatta - Makes 12 rolls or 2 loaves

Biga

  • 1/2 tsp yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm water (to the touch)
  • 1 cup all purpose flour

Add yeast and flour to the water and combine with a whisk to form a paste. Cover and let sit at room temperature eight hours or overnight (either on the counter or in the fridge).

After sitting, the biga should have a ton of bubbles on top. This, and the rising of the dough, are what will help the final bread have a beautiful crumb with a soft interior and crunchy exterior.

Dough

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tsp yeast
  • The Biga that you had resting
  • 4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 tsp salt
Add yeast to the water in your mixer bowl and stir to wet all the yeast. Add all of the Biga to the water and break it up with a spatula until stringy.

Add salt to the flour and stir, then add the flour mixture to the mixer bowl. Stir to form a thick dough. Let mixture stand for 20 minutes so the flour can absorb all of the water and the yeast can proof a little.

Use the dough hook on your mixer and let the mixer run for a good 15-20 minutes on medium speed. This will really bring the dough together and help build the gluten. At first, the dough will really stick to the bottom of the bowl, but eventually it will come away from the sides and start slapping the sides. If you don't get to this point by the halfway mark of the mixing time you may need to increase the speed on the mixer. When you stop the mixer, the dough will all fall back into the bowl and be very loose. As long as it is smooth and shiny, you are good to go.

Keep the dough in the mixer bowl and cover with a dish towel. Let this rise at room temp for 2 or 3 hours until it has tripled in bulk.

In order to most easily handle this wet dough, make sure you use A LOT of flour on your work surface. Scrape the dough out onto the flour and handle gingerly because you don't want to break all of those beautiful bubbles that are just below the surface of the dough. Sprinkle more flour on top of the dough and then cut the dough into either 2 loaves or 12 rolls. I used a pizza cutter and it worked great, you could also use your bench scraper.

Flour your hands and gently place the dough onto a floured baking sheet. Leave the dough sit for another 30 minutes or so (can go a lot longer if you want, but I wouldn't recommend letting it sit more than an hour and a half). The bubbles will really start to come out on the surface after this resting period.

Bake at 475 F for 15-20 minutes (or on a baking stone for 20-30 minutes) until golden and hollow sounding when tapped on the bottom.

Baking bread in a wood fired brick oven

Laura was inspired to start a wood fired blog by her Four Grand-Mere oven recently. In this blog she talks about everything wood fired- from her Bread Stone Ovens DIY kit build, to several cuisines made in her 700 B raised brick oven! 

For more information on the 700 B raised Click Here

Check out her blog: woodfiredvirgin.com




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