Category: Breads of the World


Makes: 2 Ciabatta
Oven: 220 °C / 425 °F
Preparation Time: 3 hours
Baking Time: 25 minutes


Starter Dough:
120 g Cake flour (1 x 250 ml / 1 cup)
2 ml Salt (¼ tsp)
5 g Anchor Instant Yeast (use ½ packet)
60 ml Lukewarm milk (4 tbsp)
125 ml Lukewarm water (½ cup)
360 g Cake flour (3 x 250 ml / 3 cups)
7 ml Salt (1½ tsp)
5 g Anchor Instant Yeast (use the other ½ of the packet)
60 ml Olive oil (4 tbsp)
180 ml Lukewarm water (¾ cup)
  1. Mix the flour and salt for the starter dough. Add the Anchor Instant Yeast (½ the packet) and mix.
  2. Mix the milk and water together and add to the flour mixture to form a batter. Mix until smooth. Cover with plastic and leave to stand until sponged up (about 20 minutes).
  3. To make the dough – mix the flour and salt together. Add the rest of the Anchor Instant Yeast and mix.
  4. Mix the oil and water, add to the flour mixture. Knead until smooth and the mixture has pulled away from the side of the bowl. Add the starter dough to this mixture and work in well with the hands, until smooth. Place into a clean, greased bowl to prevent dough from sticking.
  5. Cover with greased plastic and leave in a warm place to rise until double in volume, about 30 minutes. Repeat this step (several risings ensure the desired texture and flavour).
  6. Sprinkle a baking tray with flour, gently turn the mixture onto the flour and dust the top well with flour.
  7. Dust hands well with extra flour and gently pat the batter level. Cut the dough into 2 sections and mould each piece into an oval, puffing up the dough by running the fingers down the side and tucking the dough under, around the sides.
  8. Leave the dough uncovered to form a skin. Rise for 15 – 20 minutes and bake in a preheated oven at 220 °C / 425 °F for 25 minutes.

For a tomato / olive Ciabatta – add 250 ml (1 cup) of chopped sun-dried tomatoes / olives, which has been soaked in olive oil or flavouring of your choice. Work into the dough when the 2 mixtures are worked together and follow the recipe.