Oh man, this ciabatta bread is so good. I found the recipe over at Karen’s Kitchen Stories (hi Karen!), and judging from her photos, I just had to believe her when she wrote that this is the “perfect ciabatta recipe.” I totally agree. The bread is FULL of air bubbles (never had this many air bubbles before), while at the same time spongy (and that’s a good thing when it comes to ciabattas) which makes it a perfect rip-apart dinner bread. Or just perfect for whatever reason. Who can say no to a good ciabatta, right?
(I can’t believe I almost forgot to mention these ciabattas totally have a blistered crust. And I’m sure if I can get a blistered crust, so can you!)
Best ciabatta ever. I promise.
Ciabatta with sea salt
(Recipe adapted from Karen’s Kitchen Stories)
Total time: 2 hour prep time. The rest (between 24 and 72 hours) is just waiting. Makes 2 ciabattas.
- 567 g (20 oz) bread flour
- 2.5 tsp sea salt
- 1.25 tsp active dry yeast
- 2 cups of water
- 1 tbsp olive oil
Directions, day 1
Mix all the ingredients except for the olive oil in a bowl. Let the dough rest in the bowl for 5 minutes, then add the olive oil and mix further for about 1 minute. Put the dough in a new, lightly oiled bowl and let it rest 10 minutes. Take out the dough on an oiled surface. Stretch it out and fold it over itself from all four sides, using your hands or a scraper. Turn the dough upside down and put it back in the bowl. Let it rest 10 minutes. Repeat the stretch-and-fold method three more times, and let the dough rest in the bowl for ten minutes after each stretch-and-fold treatment. After the final stretch-and-fold (four total), cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let ferment in your fridge.
Directions, day 2 (or within four days)
I took out my dough from the fridge on the third day. When you take it out, let it first sit in room temperature for three hours. You can leave the plastic wrap on.
When three hours have passed, carefully take out the dough on a floured work bench. Stretch out the dough to a 9″x9″ square. Use a knife or a scraper to cut the dough in half. Fold each piece in thirds. Place the pieces on a parchment paper or a baking sheet, brush with olive oil and cover with plastic wrap (be nice to the environment and reuse the wrap you used for the bowl!). Let rest 1 hour.
Again, carefully turn the pieces on to a floured working bench. Fold each piece in thirds, and place it on the parchment paper. Brush with oil and cover with the same plastic wrap. Let rest 1 hour.
After one hour, put a casserole dish full of water on the bottom rack of the oven and preheat the oven to 500°F. Fold the dough one more time, and let them rest while the oven is heating up.
Sprinkle some sea salt on top of the ciabattas, then put them in the oven, and turn down the temperature to 450°F. Bake the bread for about 30 minutes, until golden brown. If the bottom of the bread is not crispy enough, but the top has a lot of color, just turn the ciabattas upside down and cook them for another 5 minutes.
Let cool on a rack. Then try not to eat it all at once!
Well hello, bubbles.