Total time: 12 hours to let the dough rise. Then another 3-4 days to let the dough ferment in the fridge. Finally 3-4 hours to shape and bake the bread. Makes 8 mini ciabattas.
- 100 g (3.5 oz) rye starter
- 425 g (15 oz, not fluid!) filtered water
- ¾ tbsp sea salt
- 567 g (20 oz )bread flour
- 1 tbsp olive oil
Mix starter, water, sea salt and bread flour in a bowl. Let the dough rest 5 minutes, then mix in the olive oil and work the dough for about 1 minute. Put the dough in a new, lightly oiled bowl and let it rest 10 minutes. Take out the dough on a lightly oiled surface. Give it one stretch and fold treatment (fold the top of the dough over the bottom, the bottom over the top, left over right, right over left). Put the dough back in the bowl, seamside down. Let it rest 10 minutes and then repeat the process three times, for a total of four stretch and fold treatments. Let the dough rest 10 minutes in between each treatment. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough sit in room temperature for about 12 hours until it has started to show yeast activity. Then put the bowl in the fridge and let the dough ferment for 2-4 days.
See where the crust has split? That’s the result of folding the dough in thirds. If you put the dough seam side up in the oven, it will split right where the seam is.
Take out the bowl from the fridge and leave it in room temperature for 3 hours. You can leave the plastic wrap on. Tip out the dough on a lightly oiled surface. Cut it in eight pieces. Carefully stretch them into rectangles, then fold them in thirds (like I did here (step 5-7) with the dough for the croissants). Place them on a lightly oiled parchment paper and cover loosely with plastic wrap. Let rest 1 hour. Gently stretch and fold them again, and put the plastic wrap back on. Let rest 1 hour. Fold them in thirds one more time (put the plastic wrap back on), then let them rest until the oven is warm.
Preheat the oven to 500 °F. Roll the bread in wheat bran and place them on a greased oven tray. Put the bread in the oven and throw in ½ cup of water on the bottom. Quickly shut the oven so the steam can’t escape. Bake for 10 minutes. Lower the temperature to 450°F and bake another 15-20 minutes. Let cool on a rack.
Bubbles! Bubbles! Bubbles! These mini ciabattas are great for sandwiches.