Champion Ciabatta

Champion Ciabatta

When you pull this delicious crusty bread out of the oven, you won’t believe your eyes! You need to wait for the dough to rise a few times—but it’s worth it!
liquid measuring cup, drinking cup, measuring spoons, plastic wrap, baking sheet, parchment paper, bowls, baking spatula, measuring cups, fork, dinner knife, pastry brush
2/3 cup (160 mL) very warm (but not hot) water (see “Yeast”)
1½ tsp (7 mL) white sugar
½ tsp (2 mL) quick-rise yeast
1½ cups (375 mL) all-purpose flour (spoon in, level)
½ tsp (2 mL) salt
1 egg white (see “Eggs”)
1 Tbsp (15 mL) vegetable oil
¼ cup (60 mL) all-purpose flour (spoon in, level)
¼ cup (60 mL) all-purpose flour (spoon in, level)
2 tsp (10 mL) water
  1. Measure the warm water into a drinking cup. Sprinkle in the sugar and yeast. Do not stir. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside for 10 minutes to let the yeast turn foamy.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. In a big bowl and using a baking spatula, mix the 1½ cups (375 mL) all-purpose flour and salt. Set aside.
  4. Go back to the foamy yeast. Use a fork to beat in the egg white and vegetable oil. Use a baking spatula to scrape mixture into the flour mixture. Stir into a sticky batter. Use a dinner knife to scrape sticky ingredients off the spatula. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it stand for 30 minutes in a warm spot.
  5. After the batter has finished rising, sprinkle one of the ¼ cup (60 mL) flour over the batter. Use the baking spatula to stir until you don’t see any more dry flour. The batter will turn into a soft dough. When it becomes too stiff to stir, use your hands to squeeze the dry flour into the dough. Cover the bowl again and let the dough rise for 15 minutes in a warm spot.
  6. After this rising, sprinkle the second ¼ cup (60 mL) flour onto the dough and squeeze it into the dough until you don’t see any more dry flour. Cover the bowl and let the dough rise (last long rising!) for another 15 minutes in a warm spot.
  7. After this rising, uncover the bowl, tip it on its side, flour your hands, and use your fingers to gently roll the dough out of the bowl and onto the middle of the parchment-lined baking sheet. Try not to squish the air out of the dough. Dust your hands with flour again and gently pat the sides of the blob of dough to make it into a long, oval shape, about 10 inches (25 cm) long and 3 inches (8 cm) wide.
  8. Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). As the oven heats, the bread (uncovered) will rise a bit more.
  9. Use a pastry brush to gently brush 2 tsp (10 mL) water over the dough. Don’t press down hard or you might squish the air out of the dough. The water helps make the bread crusty.
  10. Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 30 minutes, or until golden. Eat while warm.
Makes 1 loaf of Champion Ciabatta.

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