Traditional Ciabatta bread with sun-dried tomatoes

This bread is ideal for sandwiches or bruschetta.

Biga – left to ferment for approx. 15hrs at cool room temp.
300g ’00’ flour, medium strength
150g cold water
1.1g instant yeast

Final Dough – kept warm at 28C.
420g biga
70g ’00’ flour, medium strength
4g malt powder
7g salt
140g water
28g good quality extra-virgin olive oil
sun-dried tomatoes or a flavouring of your choice

Mix the biga by hand using downward pressure to a smooth, dry dough. Leave at room temp overnight for about 15hrs.
Next day, cut the big into pieces add malt powder, flour and an equal amount of water. Mix until smooth. Continue mixing adding the remaining water in stages. Add salt with the last of the water. Finally add the oil and mix to full gluten development before folding in the tomatoes.

Place dough in a well oiled flat and wide container. Leave to rise at warm temp (~28C). Stretch and fold at 30 min intervals until the dough is strong enough to sit high. Wait until almost double in size (~3hrs) before dividing in two.

Leave pieces to rest for 20 mins before shaping like a business letter. Dust with more flour and proof until double with cracks in the flour (~2hrs)

Total dough volume is approx. 4 times that of the mixed dough.

Oven spring was great as with any well made ciabatta, rising vertically, swelling like a balloon.

Extremely soft and porous crumb.