Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Cocodrillo Ciabatta

Do they look like crocodile slippers?
These are ciabattas I made following an interesting recipe (Jason's Cocodrillo Ciabatta) I found from 'The Fresh Loaf,' a website forum on anything and everything about bread. Cocodrillo Ciabatta literally means crocodile slippers! 

Traditionally Ciabatta bread is made using the sourdough method which requires the preparation of a pre-ferment dough; and this can take days before you can put a loaf of ciabatta on your table.
The Cocodrillo recipe on the other hand uses the straight dough method and eliminates the need of a sponge dough. This speeds up the bread making process and you can now enjoy a rustic ciabatta within hours.  

Here's a video to accompany the Cocodrillo Ciabatta recipe. I found this video very helpful and have used it as a guide when I made my ciabattas. The video shows the Cocodrillo Ciabatta making process, from the mixing of the dough to the final baking.

Credits to jenmenke .


Jason's Cocodrillo Ciabatta

  • 500g bread flour
  • 450 - 490g water  (I used 450g)
  • 2 tsp instant yeast 
  • 15g salt 

1. Mix all ingredients roughly till combined, let it rest for 10 minutes.
Be prepared for a very wet dough which has the consistency of  a gloopy pancake batter. The high water content is essential to produce the large irregular air bubbles characteristic of a ciabatta bread. Having a stand mixer to tackle the very wet dough is definitely a life-saver and a necessity. 

2. After the resting period, turn on the mixer and beat for 10-30 minutes until the dough pulls away from the sides and bottom of the bowl.
Mine took the full 30 minutes to transform from pancake batter to a sticky dough using a medium-high speed on my Kenwood Chef mixer. Do not despair if after much beating your batter hasn't changed much in consistency, the mixer speed is probably too low. So be brave and crank up the speed. The dough would be stretchy and feel very wet and sticky. Do not be tempted to add more flour, just go along with it.You'll know it's done when it separates from the side of the bowl and just coming off the bottom of the bowl, and your mixer shakes like crazy as if possessed!

3. Place into a well oiled container and let it triple its size, about 2 hours or more. It must triple!
For me, I let the dough double it's size and then kept it in the fridge to slow down the proofing process. It was very late when I did this, I was too sleepy and couldn't possibly be making bread until the wee hours, so I thought I'd continue in the morning. The next morning, I took the dough out from the fridge and left it to come to room temperature. By then it had tripled.

4. After tripling in size, use a spatula to scrape the dough from the bowl onto a heavily floured surface. Cut into 2 or 3 pieces, spray with grease and dust with flour, and allow to sit for 45 minutes. Preheat oven to 260 °C while the loaves are resting. 
I  just tipped the container and let the dough fall out onto the work surface, then cut in half and separated the two pieces just like how it was done in the video. I didn't bother greasing them, just dusted  them with plenty of flour, then covered them with a clean kitchen towel (which has been dusted with flour of course).

5. After resting 45 minutes or so (dough will be puffy and spongy), pick up one piece of the dough and stretch into your final ciabatta shape (~10" oblong rectangle) and flip them upside down (this redistributes the bubbles, so you get even bubbles throughout), and onto parchment or a heavily floured peel.
I followed the video and used two dough scrapers to scrape the dough off the work surface and turned it upside down on a lined baking sheet. I tried to do this as gently as I could in one quick motion. The dough will look as though you’ve deflated it. Fear not, it'll puff up as it bakes in the oven.  Repeat with the other piece of dough.

6. Bake at 260 °C about 15-20 minutes or until the internal temperature of the bread reaches 96 °C.
I don't have a thermometer so I baked the ciabattas a little longer to be safe, about 25 minutes. Better err on the side of overbaking than underbaking as the dough is so wet anyway.

EAT me!

I'm pretty happy how my ciabatta turned out. The texture was chewy and the crust thin and slightly crackly. As you can see, it had the desired irregular large bubbles throughout the loaf. I realy like how the large bubbles collect  the juices in my sandwich. It tasted even better toasted.  




  1. hi, first time here. This is a very nice loaf of ciabatta and i really like the big holes in them. Ciabattas are in my list for quite long and looking at yours now really making me to bake them soon!

  2. NICE! it look so lovely and yummy esp you sandwich with those fillings! GREAT JOB baking bread. i've never try baking bread before.

  3. Ciabatta is one of my fave breads, nice job!
    some good olive oil and balsamic vineger would be a perfect snack.

  4. wow the big holes in your crumb is o.0 it looks super awesome and crusty! and the recipe looks simple to follow too :) bookmarking!

  5. I will eat you for sure if I can Mr Ciabatta!

  6. Hi all, the holes in the ciabatta do make your eyes wide open o.O don't they? Haha! It's my first time making this bread ... have been intimidated before because of the very wet dough. But now I can say it's pretty easy provided u have a stand mixer and flour everything liberally! Watching the video helps a lot.

  7. hi sotong, i finally made them, thanks so much for the recipe and the video! Posted today and linked it back to you.

  8. Hello, this is my 1st visit to your lovely blog! Got to know you from Lena(Frozen Wings)'s blog! The video is very helpful, thanks for sharing. I've studied 4 different ciabatta recipes today & from knowing little abt it, now what I remember is that ciabatta has to have lots of holes! Going to give a try in the future & will keep you updated!

  9. great blog! great bread....i couldn't ask for more. Thanks for sharing....

  10. Hi,
    In the video, the lady bakes her ciabatta on a stone. Did you do the same?


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