Pane Siciliano – Sicilian Style BreadRecipes
Take your tepid – luke warm water in a measuring jug and add in your honey and dry active yeast and leave for 5 minutes until the yeast starts to activate. You can see the yeast is activating as its starts to foam.
In a separate bowl add in your Semolina flour and salt; mixing well together.
Make a well in the centre of the flour and pour in the water & yeast mixture and start to combine with the tips of your fingers.
Tip* the palms of your hands should not be touching the mix yet and should stay clean, it really is just the tips of your fingers that are doing all the work right now.
Once the mixture is nicely coming together, pour the dough out onto a clean work surface.
Tip* if the mixture is looking too wet add in some extra semolina flour and if looking too dry add in some extra tepid water until you reach a pliable consistency.
Once the dough is on the work surface this is when you start to use the palms of your hands to do most of the work.
Start the kneading process by moving back and forth and folding in and out the dough. This is the process to work the gluten in the flour to create a smooth and stretchy dough. Keep kneading for around 10 – 15 minutes until the dough is lovely and smooth and bounces back springily when you push your thumb into the dough.
Using the same bowl, line lightly with some olive oil and place the worked dough back into the bowl and cover with a clean tea towel.
Leave to rise in a warm area for up 2 hours or until doubled in size.
Once the dough has doubled in size, knock back the air and place the dough back onto your clean work surface and start to shape the dough.
Using your fingertips push out the dough to create a rectangle to roughly 25cm by 20cm.
Fold 2/3rds of the top part of the dough inwards towards you (like an envelope) and the bottom remaining 1/3rd away from you.
Take the outer edges of the dough and fold them slightly inwards and then turn the dough over (again see our step by step video guide for this).
Place onto a well-oiled baking tray and wet the top of the dough using your fingertips with water and sprinkle with the sesame seeds.
Slice 4 diagonal slits on the top of the dough and continue to leave to rise for a further hour.
Whilst proving for the second time, pre heat your oven to 200 degrees celsius and place an empty deep baking tray on the bottom of the oven.
Once ready to bake your bread, open the oven and pour around 200 ml of cold water into the empty baking tray to create steam. Quickly place your dough into the oven, close and cook for 20-30 minutes until the bread is beautifully golden and the when you tap the base of the bread it sounds hollow to the ear.
Enjoy with your Aperitvo & Stuzzichini with lots of extra virgin olive oil, or with Pane Cunzatu. Remember to share your final creations with us. Tag us on Instagram @strazzanti_co #strazzantiandfriends