How to make a Ciabiatta

Ciabatta is an Italian bread known for its chewy texture and irregular holes. It’s perfect for sandwiches, bruschetta, or dipping in olive oil. This recipe makes six ciabatta rolls that are perfect for a family meal or for sharing with friends.

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups (360g) bread flour
  • 1 tsp (5g) salt
  • 1 tsp (5g) instant yeast
  • 1 1/4 cups (300ml) warm water
  • 1 tbsp (15ml) olive oil
  • 1 tbsp (15g) sugar
  • Cornmeal, for dusting

Preparation:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the bread flour, salt, and instant yeast.

  2. In a separate bowl, mix the warm water, olive oil, and sugar.

  3. Pour the liquid mixture into the flour mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until the dough comes together.

  4. Knead the dough on a floured surface for 5-10 minutes until it’s smooth and elastic.

  5. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with a damp cloth, and let it rise in a warm place for 1-2 hours until it has doubled in size.

  6. Preheat the oven to 450°F (230°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Sprinkle some cornmeal on the parchment paper.

  7. Punch down the dough and divide it into six equal portions. Shape each portion into a flat oval shape, about 6 inches (15cm) long and 3 inches (7cm) wide.

  8. Transfer the ciabatta rolls to the baking sheet, leaving some space between each roll. Cover with a damp cloth and let it rise for another 20-30 minutes.

  9. Use a sharp knife to make shallow slashes on the top of each roll.

  10. Bake the ciabatta rolls for 15-20 minutes until they are golden brown and sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.

  11. Remove from the oven and let cool on a wire rack.

Serve the ciabatta rolls warm or at room temperature. They are delicious on their own or with some butter or olive oil for dipping. You can also use them to make sandwiches or bruschetta. Store any leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days or freeze them for later use.

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