The Fresh Loaf

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Sourdough Ciabatta

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louie brown's picture
louie brown

Sourdough Ciabatta

I lost track of the hydration of this loaf. It is somewhere between 85 and 90%. Prefermented flour (KA ap and a touch of Bob's Red Mill light rye) and water was added to a 100% starter. The dough was "folded" three times at 45 minute intervals, then fermented in bulk for about another 2.5 hours at about 75 - 80 degrees. It was then poured out onto a bed of rice and wheat flour, "shaped" by folding on itself in thirds, and quickly moved to a floured couche, where it proofed for about 2.5 hours more. At this point, the dough was very delicate. It was very gently flipped onto a piece of parchment, loaded and baked at 500 degrees, the first 15 minutes under a stainless steel bowl. The finished loaf had a height of about an inch and a half. The crust was crispy and not too thick. The crumb was very translucent and springy, with a honeycomb effect that brought to mind the Japanese baguettes of which we have seen photos. The taste was mild, with a slight tang.


Thanks to bwraith for his posts on sourdough ciabatta.


 



 



 



 


submitted to yeastspotting.

Comments

caviar's picture
caviar

Your ciabaatta looks really interesting especially the hole pattern. I wonder if you could give some more detail about the content amounts as I would really like to try to reproduce it. e.g. how much starter (in grams or ounces) and how much flour. Also you mentioned you used preferment-ed AP flour and added it to the starter to the starter and do you remember the content of the preferment amounts. Also how much flour  did you use in the 75 to 80 % dough?


I think this is a remarkable looking bread and reproducing it would be a big addition.


          Herb

louie brown's picture
louie brown

Thanks, Herb. I believe the 100% starter was almost 50% of the final dough, by baker's percentage. If the final dough was roughly 90% hydration, the flour and water in the preferment would make up the balance. I believe there is about an ounce of light rye flour in the preferment. As usual, salt was about 2%. I hope this helps. If you need help working out the actual amounts, please let me know and I will construct a formula for you.

caviar's picture
caviar

Thanks Louie, you answered most of questions but I'm still not clear. I'm guessing the preferment with sourdough was added to some quantity of additional flour, water etc., the next day. What was the proportion of preferment to the final dough and was any additional sourdough or commercial yeast added? Thanks again I see I'm not the only one who admires your bread.   Herb 

louie brown's picture
louie brown

You're welcome, Herb. Let me see if I can clarify. The preferment made up almost half the formula, based on baker's percentage. The other half of the formula was a 100% starter, and, of course, some salt. Above all, no commercial yeast. The preferment, just flour and water, no sourdough, was left on the counter for about ten hours. At present temperature in my apartment here in New York City, my starter is ready in about seven hours, so I fed it about three hours after I mixed up the flour and water preferment. When both were ready, I combined them with the salt in a mixer, just long enough to pull it all together. From there, it went as described. 


bwraith has mentioned that a little water either way - more or less - can make a big difference. So can humidity. Since I can't control my environment, nor can i measure ph, I tend to do a lot by look and feel. This time, I am sure i overdid it with the water, which is why my dough was so fluid. I probably overproofed the shaped loaf as well. Nevertheless, the "folding" gave the dough enough gluten development to enable it to basically hold its shape, instead of spreading into a pancake.

PMcCool's picture
PMcCool

The flour/water mixture, sans salt or leavening, that you are referring to as "preferment" is actually an extended autolyse.  A preferment will, by definition, contain flour, water and some fermenting agent, at a minimum.  The fermenting agent might be commercial yeast, old dough, or sourdough starter.


I suspect Herb was expecting the "preferment" to be a flour/water/leavening mixture, while you were wanting to express that you are using a flour/water mixture.


You have an interesting technique and it obviously produces a good bread.


Paul

caviar's picture
caviar

Thanks to Paul and Louie I think I have it now and will defininately try to reproduce it. I'll let you know with pictures how I make out. If you try to reproduce it again let me know. Thanks again to you and this great web site.


Herb

louie brown's picture
louie brown

I am sure you are right, Paul. I have only been doing this for fifteen years, and I still don't have the terminology straight. Fortunately, the bread is better than my limited ability to describe it.

longhorn's picture
longhorn

Gorgeous ciabatta,Louie! Very interesting crumb. You obviously handled it well! And it rewarded you!


Bake On!


Jay

wally's picture
wally

The crumb is a glowing testament to the care you took in handling a very wet and fragile risen dough.  I'm envious!


Larry

louie brown's picture
louie brown

Thanks, Jay and Larry. I am not normally so fortunate with such fragile dough. I'm always amazed at the number of things that can go wrong with baking a loaf, right up to the last second. This time, I managed to avoid the major pitfalls.

ananda's picture
ananda

Hi


I feel sure loading it at 260*C has made all the difference.   The texture for ciabatta is sensational.


Great stuff


Andy

Islandlakebaker's picture
Islandlakebaker

This is the most beautiful ciabatta I have seen yet!!!  I have come a long way in making ciabatta better than I can buy and I do!  I am humbled by your results.  I am also inspired to duplicate...


Perfection Louie...


Greg

M2's picture
M2

Very interesting pattern.