by Heather Schmitt-Gonzalez / Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Cheddar Scallion Ciabatta
makes 2 loaves (~1¼ lb. total weight...just over ½ lb. each)
1/8 tsp. active dry yeast
2 Tbs. warm water (~110°F)
1/3 c. warm water
1 c. bread flour
½ tsp. active dry yeast
2 Tbs. warm milk (~110° F)
2/3 c. warm water
1 Tbs. olive oil
2 c. bread flour
1½ tsp. salt
olive oil, for bowl
white cornmeal, for baking
For Sponge: In a small bowl stir together the yeast and 2 Tbs. warm water. Let stand 5 minutes, or until creamy. Add the remaining water and bread flour. Stir, cover bowl with plastic wrap and let sponge stand at room temperature for at least 12 hours. Mine sat for 21 hours and was beautiful and bubbly!
Turn dough out onto a work surface that has been ever-so-lightly dusted with flour; divide in half. The dough is soft soft and sensual at this point. Like seriously. I got this goofy smile on my face...and I even heard myself giggle a little. It's so soft and supple.
Transfer to a pizza peel, parchment or silpat set on the bottom side of a baking sheet (so you don't have a lip to contend with). that has been sprinkled with white cornmeal. Simply push back into shape, then use your fingertips to dimple each piece of dough all over. Dust each loaf with a tiny bit of flour.
Slide the risen loaves onto the stone from your peel or baking sheet...or, simply place the baking sheet into the oven...and bake ~20 minutes, or until golden. Transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.
freshly ground black pepper
Place an oven rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 400° F.
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Michiana-based food, drink, and travel writer with a fondness for garlic, freshly baked bread, stinky cheese, single malt Scotch, and Mexican food—who believes that immersing herself in different cultures one bite at a time is the best path to enlightenment.