The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

4/17/14 Bake

Wingnut's picture

4/17/14 Bake

Attemtped some Ciabatta, this time not such a bold bake was requested by the sainted Wife.

okay crumb but not quite there, back at it.

Made some Gnocchi the other day too.

Gnocchi with fresh sage, chicken in a brown butter sauce topped with shredded Parm

Cheers all,



Floydm's picture

Great looking loaf. The gnocchi looks delicious too.

dabrownman's picture

The bread is near perfect but the gnocchi with browned butter and sage is one of Lucy's very favorite ways to eat spuds.  Love the crust and crumb on that bread and there must be some whole grains in there somewhere right?

Now I know what to have for dinner tonight!  Well done and

Happy Baking

mwilson's picture

The gnocchi looks very tasty and with the bread...

...dinner is served!

So hungry now!

Thanks for sharing

alfanso's picture


Good looking ciabatta, as with just about everything that you post here.  I too like the large loaves that can be mistaken for speed bumps, such as yours.  I have pretty much gotten the crumb down, which you are still working on.  

I'm not so experienced that I can afford to tell others all that much, but this is what I've found works for me.  To me, the secret is in the following steps (my ciabatte are at ~83% hydration):

  1. Gluten development is king.  After maybe 4 minutes on a slower speed, it may take as long as 10 minutes or more on a higher speed (my 30 year old KA) to get the appropriate slapping sound that signals significant gluten development, but I've found that this is necessary, and the only time that I use a mixer.
  2. For me, three stretch and folds in the container. I use a rectangular container.  The first at ~45 minutes when the dough is still quite elastic is somewhat aggressive, pulling the dough up from the sides of the container with curved fingertips as though the dough was a rubber sheet.  The second and third folds are successively much more gentle - with kid gloves, so to speak.  Also at 45 minutes each.
  3.  And then I allow the dough to finish the bulk rise before dividing.

Here are a few examples.  As you can tell, I go for that darker bake.


CAphyl's picture

Wingnut:  Love the bread and the crumb and the gnocchi.  I have never made gnocchi before and will have to try it.  We have fresh sage growing, so I could make a nice butter/sage sauce. What is your recipe for the gnocchi?   Thanks.  phyllis

isand66's picture

Nice looking Ciabatta.  You will get your crumb to where it needs to be I have no doubt.  It's all in the handling of the dough.

That gnocchi looks amazing.  I have yet to try gnocchi myself, but it's on the list.

Happy Baking.


Wingnut's picture

Thanks All for the kind words.

phyllis, I don't have recipe. I learned this from an old Italian lady I lived next to years and years ago, it's all about the feel of the dough. Sorry.