Say Ciao to Ciabatta

Ok….I know I’m running a bit behind this week, but I was having internet troubles all weekend and then when it started working the Auburn game was on and it was getting good and my Tigers needed all the help they could get so..no blog.

Speaking of the Auburn game let me tell you what happened around this house. The game was not going well in my opinion and then the next thing we know Auburn is coming back. Those little guys fought for their lives and it paid off. Anyways at one point I look over and my mother is standing up yelling at the “young man” to run. I promptly told her that her age was starting to show because she felt it necessary to refer to the twenty something player as “young man.” Her other great moment came near the end of the game during a rather intense moment of the game. Mother was wearing her sweet new orange mumu house coat and I sort of jokingly told she needed to be giving off some juju. She then stands and proceeds to tell the WV quarterback to fall on his butt. Lo and behold if the sucker doesn’t just fall on his rear but also fumbles the ball. That is some serious juju in that mumu people. My knew motto may in fact be “Don’t mess with the mumu juju.”

Now back to ciabatta, which is the whole topic of this posting. The ciabatta bread was one of the hardest to mix and lets just say it may or may not have looked like a light dusting of snow in the summer in my kitchen. Once I finally got the dough together, I was worried that it might be hard to work with because of the wetness of the dough, but  I was pleasantly surprised to find that with enough flour the dough worked out nicely. The stretch and fold method used for the dough was interesting, I think I could have done something differently because my dough wasn’t stretching evenly. Oh well. 

The taste of ciabatta was very nice – the texture didn’t have the holes that I am used to seeing but it tasted wonderful. I think I would reccommend this bread as a fall/winter bread with a nice chowder or creamy soup. The next time I make it I am definitely adding some cheese to it just see how it is. Anyways, enjoy the pictures.

 

Poolish after fermenting for about 4 hours.

Poolish after fermenting for about 4 hours.

DSC00646

Ball of dough after mixing. There are no pics of the mixing process because I was fighting off a flour storm.

 

After the first stretch and fold. Once again no pics because I was covered in flour and I needed both hands to do the stretch.

After the first stretch and fold. Once again no pics because I was covered in flour and I needed both hands to do the stretch.

 

After a little resting and rising (R&R) time.

After a little resting and rising (R&R) time.

Two of my loaves sitting in a couche.

Two of my loaves sitting in a couche.

 

After a little more R&R in the couche.

After a little more R&R in the couche.

This bread required a steam oven to set the hard outer crust (this is considered a hearth bread). In order to accomplish the right enviroment I had to heat the oven to 500 and pour hot water into the cast iron skillet and then slam the door shut and let the steam set the crust.

This bread required a steam oven to set the hard outer crust (this is considered a hearth bread). In order to accomplish the right enviroment I had to heat the oven to 500 and pour hot water into the cast iron skillet and then slam the door shut and let the steam set the crust.

 

A nice warm loaf with a crispy crust right out of the oven.

A nice warm loaf with a crispy crust right out of the oven.

A few decent air pockets - I wanted some more, but maybe next time.

A few decent air pockets - I wanted some more, but maybe next time.

Next up: Cinnamon Rolls/Sticky Buns. I’m making a few of each that way we can all have the ones we want and we can run a bit of an experiment and then then give our professional opinions about which one is best.

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2 Comments

Filed under Breads

2 responses to “Say Ciao to Ciabatta

  1. Courtney, u are an excellent baker, but the stories around your household, esp of the mom in the mumu with her juju is just straight hilarious. more funny home stories please…of course, u can do the recipes on the end still!

  2. mylifebydesign

    haha girl…those cinnamon rolls will rock your world. i am planning on baking some bread at rachel’s this weekend…i haven’t done challah yet or ciabatta. But, i did make these FABULOUS pumpkin cookies off joy the baker’s website. Best cookies I have ever had in my life. hands down.

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