Ciabatta for a Lovely Lunch Treat

We were inspired by this post from The Perfect Loaf to try making a sourdough ciabatta for some special friends, who used to own a cafe and are very particular about their food.

The first thing we realised about ciabatta is that it really should be eaten the same day that it is baked. Because of the high hydration it does become a bit “chewy” the next day. However having said that it is magnificent when eaten after it has cooled from coming out of the oven.

Unit size 500g (17.646oz)
Number of loaves 4
Total flour 1022g (36.050oz)


Here is an example of the schedule.

Time Action
Saturday 6am Make sourdough
Saturday 8.30am Make autolyse
Saturday 9.00am Mix final dough
Saturday 10.00am Turn and stretch dough
Saturday 10.30am Turn and stretch dough
Saturday 11.00am Turn and stretch dough
Saturday 11.30am Turn and stretch dough
Saturday 12.00pm Add to covered container and place in fridge
Sunday 9am Remove container from fridge
Sunday 10.15am Prepare oven
Sunday 10.55pm Boil water for steam
Sunday 11am Bake two loaves at 250°C (482°F) for 8 mins and 22 mins at 180°C (356°F) . Put oven back to max and let it heat up for 15 mins before placing the next loaves in.
Sunday 11.45am Bake two loaves at 250°C (482°F) for 8 mins and 22 mins at 180°C (356°F) .

Sourdough – Ingredients

Ingredients Measurements
Mother Starter 59g (2.081oz)
Bakers flour 29g(1.024oz)
Stoneground flour 29g(1.024oz)
Water 59g (2.083oz)
176g (6.212oz)


Fermentation Time 3 hours
Required Dough Temperature 26°C (79°F)
  1. Add flours to bowl.
  2. Add starter to bowl. Note that this is considered a mother starter because the starter amount will not be removed before the final dough stage.
  3. Add water to bowl and mix well using your hands.
  4. Cover and leave to ferment for the Fermentation Time.

For detailed instructions go to this link:
How to make a sourdough.


Ingredients Measurements
Bakers flour 840g (29.629oz)
Stoneground flour 124g(4.373oz)
Water 636g(22.434oz)
1600g (56.436oz)


Fermentation Time 30 mins
Required Dough Temperature 26°C (79°F)
  1. Weigh and add flours to bowl.
  2. Weigh and add water to bowl.
  3. Mix together.
  4. Cover and leave until it needs to be added to the next stage.

Bread Dough – Ingredients

Ingredients Measurements
Sourdough 176g (6.212oz)
Autolyse 1600g (56.436oz)
Extra virgin olive oil 31g (1.092oz)
Water 174g (6.137oz)
Sea salt 20g (0.707oz)
2001g (70.584oz)


Dough to Oven Time 22 hours 10 mins
Bulk Fermentation Time 2 hours 30 mins
Retardation Time 17 hours 10 mins
Final Proof Time 2 hours
Required Dough Temperature 26°C (79°F)
Baking Temperature and Time Set oven to the hottest it can go and warm up the stone for 40mins. Then bake at 250°C (482°F) for 8 mins and 22 mins at 180°C (356°F).
  1. Add sourdough to bowl with autolyse.
  2. Weigh water but hold off adding full amount to bowl. Because of the high hydration we will add the water gradually.
  3. Weigh and add olive oil to bowl with a splash of the measured out water.
  4. Weigh and add salt to the bowl.
  5. Mix in bowl until liquids have been absorbed and turn out on to bench and knead.
  6. Place back in bowl and add some more water. Again mix until absorbed and then turn out on to bench and knead. Continue to do this until all of the water has been incorporated into the dough. Knead until the dough is developed, we managed to form a window pane.
  7. Place dough back into the bowl and cover for the bulk fermentation time, stretching and turning every half hour.
  8. Place dough in a square tub with a cover and store in fridge for the retardation time.
  9. Remove from fridge and dust top of dough with flour. Use plastic scraper to loosen the dough from the sides of the container and invert and allow the dough to drop on to the bench.
  10. Dust the top of the dough and then use the metal scraper to cut square dough in to four quarters.
  11. Lay out some baking paper on to baking trays and place a dough piece on to the paper and gently stretch (one person pulling at each end works well). Repeat for all dough pieces and dust with flour and cover with a tea towel.
  12. Allow to ferment for the final proof time.
  13. Set oven to the hottest it can go and warm up the stone for 40mins. Then bake at 250°C (482°F) for 8 mins and 22 mins at 180°C (356°F). Don’t forget to have your steam engine in place before you heat up the oven. When you add the bread to the oven spray with water as well as adding boiling water to the bowl. You can bake two loaves at a time.

This was our second attempt at this recipe and it was a great hit with our lunch guests. In our first attempt we didn’t develop the dough properly but this time, even though the dough has a very high hydration we made sure we got a window pane. This is a lovely bread and we will be adding it to our supplied recipes next time we release a Bread Boss upgrade.

Here are some screenshots from Bread Boss.

Recipe Image and description


Recipe Settings


Recipe Sourdough Stage


Recipe Autolyse Stage


Recipe Final Dough Stage


Final Dough Information
Recipe alarms

Check out our app Bread Boss on iTunes and the Google Play Store for more recipes and the ability to create your own alarms and recipes:


5 replies on “Ciabatta for a Lovely Lunch Treat”

Hi Andy,
Yes this recipe will be added as a supplied recipe the next time we release an update to Bread Boss.
Kind regards,

Really enjoying using this program. Let’s me concentrate on the product, not the recipe
Now to work out how the water temp works…..

Really looking forward to the update that adds Ciabatta! Love Bread Boss, sorted the issues I was having calculating times.

Hey guys, don’t overlook the fact that you can enter any formula you want, including your own, just takes a few clicks.

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