Cherry Yeast Water Blueberry-Raspberry Ciabatta

8 Jul

FinalBreadMy wife made some Sangria for the 4th of July and had a ton of fresh blueberries and raspberries left over so I decided to use some of them up.  My fellow baking friend Evon inspired this bake with her use of blue berries, cherries and cranberries in her recent sourdough breads.

I wanted to use my Cherry Yeast Water instead of a my sourdough starter.  I also wanted to incorporate some whole grains in this bake so I used some Spelt and Dark Rye (Pumpernickel) flours in the main dough.  I used some lower protein 00 style Italian flour and French style flour from KAF in the starter and the main dough.

In hindsight it may have been better to skip the 00 style flour in this one and have a little more dough strength.  The final dough was wet as expected but I did not get much oven rise and this one was more difficult to handle than Ciabatta I have made in the past.

In the end though, the bread came out just fine although a little flatter than I would have liked but it tastes terrific with a little nuttiness from the spelt and rye and the blueberries and raspberries add a whole other dimension.

This one is worth giving a try if you are up to the challenge.




Levain Directions Build 1

Mix all the levain ingredients together for about 1 minute and cover with plastic wrap.  Let it sit at room temperature for around 7-8 hours or until the starter has doubled.  (Note: I used my proofer set at 83 degrees).

Levain Directions Build 2

Add all the ingredients listed to the levain from Build 1 and mix well.  Let it sit in your proofer or a warm place about 83 degrees for 4-5 hours until the starter is nice and bubbly and has doubled in size.


Mix the flours together with the water for about 1 minute.  Let it sit in your mixing bowl covered for about 15 to 30 minutes.

Next, add the Yeast Water and salt and mix on medium low for 3 minutes. You can now add the blueberries and raspberries and mix for another minute until they are incorporated.   Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl using a dough scraper or spatula. Cover the bowl and let it rest for 10 minutes.

After 10 minutes transfer the dough to a lightly oiled work surface or you can do the S & F’s in the bowl itself.  . Make sure you oil your hands and do a stretch and fold on all sides of the dough and flip it over and form it into a ball. Put the dough back in the bowl and let it rest for another 10 minutes at room temperature. Do this stretch and fold process three more times over the next 30 to 40 minutes.

After you do the last stretch and fold put it back in the bowl and cover it. Then let it sit at room temperature for 2 hours and cover it tightly and refrigerate overnight.

Take the dough out of the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature for 1.5 to 2 hours.   Place a large piece of parchment paper either on your work area or the back of a baking pan and dust with flour to cover it completely. Using an oiled or wet dough scraper gently remove the dough to the work surface. You want to be very careful so you don’t degas the dough and kill the big air holes you want to achieve.

Flour your hands and lightly dust the top of the dough. Use your hands and a metal dough scraper and form the dough into a 9″ square and be very careful again not to manhandle the dough and degas it.

Next, cut the dough into either 3 small Ciabatta or 2 larger size loaves. I opted to go with the 2 larger size but probably would have been better making 3 smaller ones.

Gently fold the individual dough pieces into thirds like an envelope. Make sure to be very careful and not to apply any pressure. Roll the folded dough in the flour to coat it and lift it onto the parchment paper and roll it in the flour again. Rest the dough seam side down and repeat with the other piece(s) of dough.

Spray the tops of the dough with oil (I use a baking spray) and cover the pan with plastic wrap very loosely. You can also use a clean lint free kitchen towel.

After 1 hour of resting, roll the dough pieces very gently so the seam side is now facing up and lift them with your floured hands to coax them into either a 7″ rectangle if making the larger size or 5″ rectangle.  Try to get them to be as close to a rectangle shape as you can when you put them back down on the parchment paper.

Let them rest covered loosely again for 1 hour.

About 45 minutes before baking, pre-heat oven with baking stone (I use one on bottom and one on top shelf of my oven), to 550 degrees F.

Place an empty pan in bottom shelf of your oven or a cast iron skillet.

Pour 1 cup of boiling water into pan and place loaves into oven. I also spray the side walls of the oven with water 2 to 3 times for added steam.

Lower oven to 450 Degrees and bake for 12 minutes and rotate the bread and bake for an additional 15 to 20 minutes until bread has a nice golden brown crust and the internal temperature reaches 200 degrees. The bread should have puffed up a little and should be hard when you tap it.

Let it cool on a wire rack for 45 minutes (good luck waiting that long!) and enjoy!

The bread should have nice large irregular holes and should be soft after cooling.



Here are some photos of the pretzel rolls and hot dog buns I made for the 4th of July party we went to along with a cherry pie my wife made.  I also made 7 racks of ribs and a big brisket but didn’t have a chance to take any photos.






Hungry Bee!

This post has been submitted to the Yeast Spotting Site here:

2 Responses to “Cherry Yeast Water Blueberry-Raspberry Ciabatta”

  1. terribetz July 8, 2013 at 11:37 pm #

    Very pretty pictures! Thanks for sharing this! I love experimenting too. Learning a lot from your posts! 🙂

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