The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Sourdough Ciabatta Experiment

mwilson's picture
mwilson

Sourdough Ciabatta Experiment

Biga acida

  • 20g lievito naturale
  • 200g '00' flour
  • 80g cold water

Lievito dissolved in water first then mixed with flour to create a very dry dough. Pin rolled until smooth. Rolled flat, ~4mm thick, wrapped in cling film and refrigerated for 2 days before removing and left overnight until mature.

Final dough

  • 175g biga acida
  • 35g '00' flour
  • 86g water
  • 3g salt

Cut biga into pieces and mixed with 35g of water. Added flour to combine. Added salt. Adjusted the mix with remaining water to achieve a total hydration of 85%. Very minimal kneading. A few s&f's performed.

Crumb

Observations

The biga was wonderfully strong after fermentation. Stronger than I ever felt a biga to be, really nice to feel. Fruity alcohol smell and characteristics reminiscent of a yeasted biga but accompanied with an acetic acid taste. 

The biga contributed vast strength, the final dough at 85% handled like it was 70%!

Final dough didn't rise as swiftly as I expected. The biga was probably not fully mature.

Baked loaf has wonderful flavour in the crust and some sourness in the crumb. Super light.

-Michael

Comments

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Great, Michael! Great looking sd ciabatta, and beautiful crumb too. Your bread flour must be super strong too.

mwilson's picture
mwilson

Cheers Khalid.

Flour is medium strong. 11-12% protein...

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

I'll use this one!  Thanks for the lovely recipe!

Sylvia

mwilson's picture
mwilson

Always glad to share my experiments... I feel like a mad scientist!

Thanks,

Michael

Toad.de.b's picture
Toad.de.b

Mmm, looks terrific, Michael.   Sure earns the moniker 'slipper' from your pic! 

Merely 85% hydration?  Is the hero of 100% hydration spelt off his game?

Simple, interesting process.   40% hydration -- talk about a stiff starter.  Worth a try.  And I'm anxious to see how giving my starters Italian names affects flavor and texture.

;-)

Thanks for posting!

Tom

 

mwilson's picture
mwilson

Thank you Tom.

I didn't feel extreme hydration was necessary for this bread.

A true biga is typically very stiff. 40-45% is not uncommon. There is good reason too...

Lievito naturale is a very specific sourdough starter. It is always stiff ~45% hydration, kept at 28C. Before use it is fed 3 times every four hours and when mature it will triplicate its volume each time. This type of starter has very strong leavening power and is used for breads like Panettone. Sorry to deflate the humour. A good joke nonetheless.

Michael

isand66's picture
isand66

What kind of flour are you using for the Lievito?

isand66's picture
isand66

Great looking bake.

I like your nice open crumb and the uniform shape of your ciabatta.

So what hydration is your lievito naturale?

mwilson's picture
mwilson

Thanks Ian.

I must be one of only few that actually shape ciabatta. I know it's easier just to cut out pieces but I prefer the business letter fold.

Lievito naturale is around 45% hydration.

Cheers,
Michael 

Franko's picture
Franko

Brilliant work Michael! This a beauty to behold, particularly the crumb, but the well aerated crust is lovely as well. We all need to have more of our experiments turning out as nicely as this one has for you. Nice baking!

Cheers,

Franko 

mwilson's picture
mwilson

Thanks for your kind words Franko. I'm really touched.

Glad you like it. I shall keep on experimenting!

Thanks,

Michael

 

mwilson's picture
mwilson

I'm making this again. Just made the biga acida.

Pin rolled the dough until very smooth. It's just like working pasta. Kept it flat, covered and stuck in the freezer for 15 mins then rolled up and put under the stairs. Nice and cool there!