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Sourdough Ciabatta Rolls - no kneading at all

txfarmer's picture

Sourdough Ciabatta Rolls - no kneading at all


This formula is adapted from Wild Yeast's great recipe here:, with the following changes:

1. Increased the hydration to 85%

2. The original formual requires no machine kneading but does do a bit of hand kneading in the beginning, I don't knead at all, not with machine, not with hand. I used the same technique from my 36 hour sourdough baguettes: a long cold autolyse (4 hours in this case) to develope the initial gluten, then add in the 100% starter and salt, mix until roughly even. At that point, the "dough" looks like following, don't worry, it will be fine.


3. Added a S&F during bulk rise, which makes 4 S&F in total. And look how smooth the dough looks at the end of the 2 hour bulk rise! Magic!


4. After an overnight stay in the fridge and 1.5 hour of warm up at room temp, it full of bubbles, beautiful.


5. I only made 1/3 of the recipe since I didn't have enough starter, so 4 rolls rather than 12. They look very flat and sad proofing, I decreased the proofing time to 1 hour since the house was warm.


6. Flip over one by one then into an hot oven they go. Amazing ovenspring. They sang loud and proud out of the oven.


Nice open crumb. Nice delicious flavor.


I think all that dividing for rolls destroyed some bubbles. Next time I will just make one big loaf with this amount of the dough, I think the crumb will be even more open.


Submitting to Yeastspotting.



Sjadad's picture

You want a more open crumb?!  All you'll have is crust :)

I think I have to make ciabatta this weekend.

Syd's picture

You want a more open crumb?!  All you'll have is crust :)

Lol!  Indeed, you want some crumb with your air.

Lovely looking ciabatta txfarmer.


SallyBR's picture

I actually like the crumb exactly as it is, for ciabatta it's perfect!


wonderful, Txfarmer!

txfarmer's picture

Thanks guys! I am happy with the crumb, just think it might even be better for a large one. As is, the middle/center of the roll, when cut horizontally is a bit dense.

earth3rd's picture

Wow... those look fantastic!!! Nicely done.

txfarmer's picture


Zeb's picture

I am going to have to try and make these and if they looked even half as good as those beauties I would be so happy. Really lovely ciabatta!

Are they proofing on parchment or a couche cloth may I ask how you stop them sticking to whatever it is?  Moving ciabatta around is where I get 'stuck' usually.



txfarmer's picture

As shown in the picture, they are proofed on parchment paper. To avoid sticking, use a lot of flour - a blend of rice flour and AP.

Zeb's picture

Thankyou !

SylviaH's picture

Makes me want a juicy sandwich...sliced crosswise, perfect crumb to hold all those Italian juices for a great sandwich.


txfarmer's picture

That's what we did to the other 3 rolls, very yummy.

teketeke's picture

I better echo everybody's comment!  I would like to make pizzas with the dough.

Best wishes,


earth3rd's picture

Make sure you bake the pie shell a little before you add the rest of the ingrediants as the dough is very wet.

txfarmer's picture

Pizza would be a good idea for this dough.

breadsong's picture

Hello txfarmer,

Khalid just baked his beautiful Ciabatta with Biga, and now here are your lovely Ciabatta rolls. You have such skill with high-hydration doughs, maintaining that open crumb! If only there were video, to see your skilled hands at work!

Thanks for the great pictures and inspiration,
from breadsong

dmsnyder's picture


ananda's picture

Hi txfarmer,

do you count the oil as part of the hydration?   There is no water in the oil; it scarcely functions the same as water, and I never count it in this calculation.

Unless you've managed to hide the sections of crumb [?] that are a "bit dense", then I'm with the others at the top.   It's nice to have a bit of crumb to enjoy with your crust!

The ciabatta rolls look absoultely wonderful to me, and it's interesting to see the dough develop without any mechanical aid too.

Best wishes


mwilson's picture

That crumb is majestic!

Unfortunately I couldn't replicate this. I couldn't allow myself to have a dough look like that with the large bubbles lifting up and no surface tension - for me this is an error. But the end results are testament to the contrary.

It's the differences that make the world go round.

As long as it's natural, made with love and tastes great then what more can you ask for...?!

(I need to knead! :P) 

wayne on FLUKE's picture
wayne on FLUKE

Made 6 of these rolls this morning and had them for lunch. Best ciabatta I have made. I hadn't tried any in quite a while due to lack of success. I followed your process but kept the hydration the same as Susan (wild yeast) since I didn't want to take chances until I have some good results.

My biggest concern is always handling the wet dough. I decided to scrape it onto floured counter, divide, spread apart, tuck edges under, put a little corn meal on top, cover and proof, then flip one at a time onto parchment paper already on peel and slide onto hot stone. Minimal handling and worked for me! Used Sylvia's towel steam method.

Timing was pretty easy. 1st refresh of starter Fri night, 2nd feeding Sat morning, make dough Sat evening, refer overnight and divide, proof, bake Sun morning.

thanks again -- wayne

Muskie's picture

TxFarmer, I baked this recipe this morning. I admit I didn't follow it to a T, something I have to work on. However, my question is this. I made 6 ciabatta rolls out of half the recipe. They were small when I cut them outta the dough, I assumed they would spread when backed. Instead of spreading, they ballooned into balls. This left me with rolls that had too much crust. The crumb was perfect, but there was just too much crust. Slicing them as you might a baguette was difficult, but my hope was to use them as sandwich buns...and there was no way I could do that.

Any idea what might have gone wrong? When I put them in the oven they were small, but at least flat and rectangular.

txfarmer's picture

1) if you want them flat, you need to proof them longer so that they don't get that much oven spring. 

2) However I am unsure how a flat profile would mean less crust. 

Muskie's picture

Well, its tough to describe, but basically they were so small that every slice was essentially a mouthful, so each bite had 4 sides of crust. I'll have to do some more reading to figure out how to avoid oven spring, so far its been a prime target to achieve oven spring...;-]

Carolina's picture


When you autolyse for 4 hours is it just the flour and water mixed together or do you add the oil too?  

I am making these rolls for the first time and cant wait until tomorrow morning when I will mix everything together.  (I haven't added the oil to the autolyse so I hope your reply is to add it when I add the starter).

Your breads are beautiful.

ibaguette's picture

Hi Txfarmer,

In your previous response, you wrote, "I only count water, about 85% of milk."  Did you use milk in one of your batches?  What is the difference between using milk vs water from your experience?  Thanks.

Happy baking,