A Tradition in Family Baking

Ciabatta Rolls

Ciabatta Rolls
Chewy and crusty these traditional Italian rolls are perfect for making the ultimate sandwich.
Yield: 9 rolls
For the Starter Dough (Biga)
  • ¼ teaspoon Red Star Platinum Yeast
  • 1 cup warm water (110-115°F)
  • 2¼ cups all purpose flour
  • ¾ cup water (room temperature)

For the Second Stage Dough
  • 2¼ cups all purpose flour
  • 1¼ teaspoons Red Star Platinum Yeast
  • 2¼ teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1½ cups warm water (110-115°F)
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • Biga from previous day
  • cornmeal for dusting baking sheets
  1. Recipe created by Foodness Gracious.

  1. Combine the ¼ teaspoon yeast with one cup warm water and dissolve. Let stand for 10 minutes.

  2. Take one teaspoon of this water and add it to the ¾ cup regular water. Dispose the first yeast water.

  3. In a medium sized bowl, add the flour and water and mix together to form a stiff dough.

  4. Cover with plastic wrap and leave on the counter overnight.

Second Stage Dough:
  1. Next day combine the flour, yeast and salt in a bowl.

  2. Add the water and mix gently. Add the biga from the previous day and mix it through the dough.

  3. Squeeze the biga to break it up, it'll still be slightly stringy and chunky but the dough will get smoother.

  4. The dough will be sticky, dump it onto a well floured surface and dust again with flour. Carefully turn it over multiple times to knead it adding just enough flour to prevent it sticking. A dough scraper is an excellent tool to use for this task.

  5. Transfer the dough to a large bowl which has been coated with olive oil. Cover again and let sit for about three hours or until the dough has doubled in size.

  6. Dump the dough back out onto a floured surface and fold it in three times like folding a letter. Cut into roughly 9 square pieces. Transfer each piece to a towel which has been heavily dusted with flour seam side down.

  7. Let the rolls sit covered for another hour. Preheat the oven to 450°F and dust a pizza stone or some baking trays with a little cornmeal.

  8. After an hour, carefully flip the rolls over transferring them to the stone or baking trays finishing seam side up.

  9. Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes ending with a nice golden color on the top and bottom of the rolls.
The dough will be sticky, handle it quickly but gently, using flour to prevent it sticking to your hands too much. These rolls are rustic so don't worry too much about the size or shape being uniformed.


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  1. The rolls came out really nicely, however, I did not get those large holes. How do I do that?
    Thanks, Caroline

    • Hi Caroline,
      I’m happy to hear you like the rolls. I find the dough really needs to be very slack (or wet) to achieve the large holes. Make sure not to add too much flour during kneading. Let us know how your next batch turns out!
      Happy baking!

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