Homemade Ciabatta Bread

Nothing compares to the aroma of homemade bread being baked in your kitchen.  The only thing that comes close is tasting that homemade bread fresh out of the oven.  There was a time when I thought the only way to enjoy these luxuries was if you had a bread machine, and then I came across the recipe for English Muffin Bread.  It sounded easy enough, so I tried it and ever since it has been a recipe that I go back to and make frequently.  So, when I found this recipe for Homemade Ciabatta Bread I decided to expand my bread making repertoire. 

The only downside to this recipe that you have to wait 2 hours to let the dough rise before you can bake it.  If you are anything like me, these 2 hours will seem like a lifetime and you will find yourself peaking at the dough every few minutes because it seems like it is taking FOREVER!! But it is so worth it because this bread did not disappoint! I enjoyed some with a little butter and then some more dipped in some olive oil with salt. This bread also makes for a delicious grilled cheese 🙂 

Ingredients:
– 4 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
– 1 1/2 tsp active dry yeast
– 1 tsp kosher salt
– 3/4 tsp granulated sugar
– 1 3/4 cup + 2 tbsp warm water
– 2 tsp olive oil, plus more for your bowl

Directions:
1. Combine flour, yeast, salt and sugar in a medium bowl.  Pour in warm water and stir for 5-10 minutes with a wooden spoon (or use a dough hook attachment) until well combined.
2. With well-floured hands, knead the dough for 5 minutes.  The dough will be very sticky, but try your best!
3. Coat a large bowl with olive oil, then place your dough in it and drizzle 2 tsp more on top of the dough.  Move your dough around until it is totally covered in the olive oil.  Cover the bowl with a clean towel and place in a warm spot to rise for 2 hours.
4. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper and sprinkle lightly with flour.  After flouring your hands, form the dough into loaf-like shape, place on the pan, then sprinkle with some flour.  Bake for 35-40 minutes, until the loaf is just slightly golden brown on top. Cool on a wire rack for 20 minutes before slicing and enjoying.Enjoy 🙂




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