This is how it's made Red Pepper Swirl Ciabatta

  1. In a bowl make up the starter. Combine the strong flour, yeast and the water mixing to a rough dough.
  2. Turn out onto the work surface and knead for five minutes until smooth.
  3. Transfer the starter dough to a lightly oiled container, cover and leave to rise at room temperature for 6 hours or overnight if preferred.
  4. Once the starter has almost doubled in size it is time to turn it into the Ciabatta dough. Using a stand mixer is ideal as the dough can be very sticky. It can of course be done by hand but be prepared for the stickiness of the dough! Keeping hands and surfaces well oiled will help if doing it by hand.
  5. Add the starter dough to the bowl of the mixer along with the strong white flour, yeast, salt, olive oil, melted Stork and water. Mix to combine the ingredients.
  6. Knead for 10 minutes until smooth and silky.
  7. Add a good glug of olive oil to a clean bowl or container and add the ciabatta dough. Turn to coat it in the olive oil. Cover and leave to rise for 2 hours or until doubled in size.
  8. Prepare the red pepper pesto. Blitz together all the pesto ingredients and transfer to a small bowl. Set to one side for later.
  9. Once the Ciabatta dough has risen preheat the oven to 190c(fan)/220c/Gas Mark 7.
  10. Prepare a lined baking tray and scatter with semolina.
  11. Add a good dusting of semolina to the work surface and very gently turn out the dough onto the surface. It is important to be as gentle as possible with the dough to avoid deflating it.
  12. Gentle stretch out the dough into a rectangle roughly 50 cm x 35cm.
  13. Split the dough rectangle through the middle with a sharp knife.
  14. Take the red pepper pesto and spread ¼ across the middle of each piece of dough.
  15. For each piece flip the top 1/3rd of dough down onto the pesto.
  16. Spread the remaining pesto over the top of each and flip the bottom 1/3rd of dough up over the pest to form a sort of envelope. These are the formed loaves.
  17. Pinch together the dough along the seam and at either end.
  18. Carefully and quickly scoop up each loaf and transfer to the prepared baking tray, gently reshaping if necessary.
  19. Cover with a clean tea towel and allow to rise for 30 minutes until well puffed up.
  20. Bake in the oven for 25 – 30 minutes until golden on the top and the base sounds hollow when tapped.
  21. Transfer the baked loaves to a wire rack to cool.
  22. Serve.
  • Temperature: 190 oC
  • Baking time:
  • Serves: 2