Simple Ciabatta Bread Recipe

Indulge in the rustic charm of this Ciabatta Bread! Baked to perfection in a wood-fired oven, this artisanal delight boasts a crispy crust and a tender, airy interior that will leave you craving more. Elevate your culinary experience with this timeless classic that's perfect for dipping, savoring, and sharing with loved ones.

Baking a simple Ciabatta Bread recipe in an outdoor pizza oven can result in a delightful loaf with a crisp crust and a soft, airy interior.  Out of all the wonderful food you can make with a pizza oven, we love this ciabatta bread! it’s a simple recipe that we can’t keep to ourselves. Makes 12 rolls or 2 loaves

sourdough starter in a jar

Biga

  • 1/2 tsp yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm water (to the touch)
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour

Add yeast and flour to the water and combine with a whisk to form a paste. Cover and let sit at room temperature for eight hours or overnight (either on the counter or in the fridge).

After sitting, the biga should have a ton of bubbles on top. This, and the rising of the dough, is what will help the final bread have a beautiful crumb with a soft interior and crunchy exterior.

bread dough formed into rolls

Dough

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tsp yeast
  • The Biga that you had resting
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 tsp salt

First,  add yeast to the water in your mixer bowl and stir to wet all the yeast. Next, add all of the Biga to the water and break it up with a spatula until stringy.

Then, add salt to the flour and stir, then add the flour mixture to the mixer bowl. Stir to form a thick dough. Let the mixture stand for 20 minutes so the flour can absorb all of the water and the yeast can proof a little.

Use the dough hook on your mixer and let the mixer run for a good 15-20 minutes on medium speed. This will really bring the dough together and help build the gluten. At first, the dough will really stick to the bottom of the bowl, but eventually, it will come away from the sides and start slapping the sides. If you don’t get to this point by the halfway mark of the mixing time you may need to increase the speed on the mixer. When you stop the mixer, the dough will all fall back into the bowl and be very loose. As long as it is smooth and shiny, you are good to go.

Keep the dough in the mixer bowl and cover with a dish towel. Let this rise at room temp for 2 or 3 hours until it has tripled in bulk.

In order to most easily handle this wet dough, make sure you use A LOT of flour on your work surface. Scrape the dough out onto the flour and handle it gingerly because you don’t want to break all of those beautiful bubbles that are just below the surface of the dough. Sprinkle more flour on top of the dough and then cut the dough into either 2 loaves or 12 rolls. I used a pizza cutter and it worked great, you could also use your bench scraper.

Flour your hands and gently place the dough onto a floured baking sheet. Leave the dough to sit for another 30 minutes or so (can go a lot longer if you want, but I wouldn’t recommend letting it sit for more than an hour and a half). The bubbles will really start to come out on the surface after this resting period.

Bake at 475 F for 15-20 minutes (or on a baking stone for 20-30 minutes) until golden and hollow sounding when tapped on the bottom.

SOURCE

Bread Characteristics:

  • Crust: Baking in an outdoor pizza oven will likely result in a crust with a slightly charred, crisp exterior due to the high heat and open flame.
  • Crumb: The inside should have a soft, airy crumb with irregular holes, typical of Ciabatta bread, created by the high moisture content of the dough and the stretching during shaping.
  • Flavor: The high heat of the outdoor oven can impart a subtle smokiness to the bread, enhancing its overall flavor profile.

Remember, outdoor pizza ovens can vary in temperature and heating method, so adjusting the baking time and temperature might be necessary based on your specific oven. Enjoy your freshly baked Ciabatta Bread straight from the outdoor oven!

a HESTAN PIZZA OVEN with dark green accent features

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