Am I the last BBA‘r to make Italian bread? I feel like I am! I’ve been seeing Kaiser rolls and Lavash crackers pop up on all the BBA blogs lately and I’m still stuck on Italian bread! I put it off because the last bread I made was the French bread and this one seemed almost exactly the same to me.
It was a 2 day bread (aren’t they all?!) which is another reason it took me so long to make it. On more than one occasion I’ve opened the book, saw that I needed to make a biga (just flour, yeast, & water kneading together and rested over night) and promptly closed the book.
Don’t ever show up on my doorstep looking for parchment. I buy it twice a year and run out within a week.
There was nothing difficult about the bread. I did have some trouble shaping it into torpedos if you can’t tell but that’s because I’m impatient not because it was a tricky dough.
And this is where I complain about hearth baking:
I just don’t get it. Hearth baking (a steam pan under the bread & spraying the sides of oven with water) is Annoying. Yes, with a capital A. I’ve made a lot of bread in my short baking life and I can’t tell the difference between a bread baked with a steam pan under it and one baked without. But when Peter Reinhart tells me to do it, I do it just in case this is the one bread that will be messed up if I don’t.
These little rolls make the best sandwiches. They’re so soft on the inside and the crust is deliciously chewy. I still can’t tell the difference between it and the French bread so I think one day I’ll have to make them both and do a side by side comparison.