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Ciabatta & Olio Nuovo

This recipe to make your own ciabatta will bring a whole new dimension to your olio nuovo.

Olio Nuovo is the first extra virgin olive oil off the press each season, and is bottled right away, unfiltered. Each year on the groves olio nuovo it is celebrated and anticipated, so do as the Italians do and enjoy it lavishly as the seasonal treat it is. A typical way to taste it is to make the most of the fresh oil and its strong flavours, grassy with a peppery kick, is with Fettunta. And even better, if you make your own ciabatta for this. 


Recipe

  • Makes 2 loaves

Ingredients

  • 250g/ 8.8oz strong white bread flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 5g/ 0.1oz salt
  • 5g/ 0.1oz instant yeast
  • 20ml/ 1 US tbsp olive oil
  • 200ml/ 6.8 floz tepid water
  • Fine semolina for dusting (optional)
250g/ 8.8oz strong white bread flour, plus extra for dusting 5g/ 0.1oz salt 5g/ 0.1oz instant yeast 20ml/ 1 US tbsp olive oil 200ml/ 6.8 floz tepid water Fine semolina for dusting (optional)

Method

  1. Lightly oil a 1-2 litre square plastic container. (A square tub helps shape the dough).
  2. Put the flour, salt and yeast into the bowl of a mixer fitted with a dough hook (don’t put the salt directly on top of the yeast). Add the olive oil and three-quarters of the water and begin mixing on a slow speed. As the dough starts to come together, slowly add the remaining water. Then mix for a further 5-8 minutes on a medium speed until the dough is smooth and stretchy.
  3. Tip the dough into the prepared tub, cover with a tea towel and leave until at least doubled, even trebled in size – 1-2 hours or longer.
  4. Heat your oven to 220°C/ 428°F and line 2 baking trays with baking parchment or silicone paper.
  5. Dust your work surface heavily with flour – add some semolina too, if you have some. Carefully tip out the dough (it will be very wet) onto the work surface, trying to retain a rough square shape. Rather than knocking it back, handle it gently so you can keep as much air in the dough as possible. Coat the top of the dough with more flour and/or semolina. Cut the dough and divide lengthways into 2 strips.  Stretch each piece of dough lengthways a little and place on prepared baking trays.
  6. Leave the ciabatta dough to rest for a further 10 minutes, then bake for 25 minutes, or until the loaves are golden brown and sound hollow when tapped on the base. Cool on a wire rack.

 

To enjoy this with your Olio Nuovo, toast some of your fresh ciabatta on a grill, then rub with some fresh garlic cloves while the bread is hot and crunchy. Generously pour over your olio nuovo and season with a good amount of course salt.

Buon appetito!