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Stecca Bread

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    This no-knead stecca or “stick” sandwich bread is worth the bit of planning required. It’s perfect for our sardine or salmon sandwiches.

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    2 cups (500 mL) whole wheat bread flour
    1 cup (250 mL) white bread flour
    1 tsp (5 mL) salt
    1 tsp (5 mL) turbinado, sucanat, or other sugar
    Generous 1/4 tsp (1 mL) active dry yeast
    1 1/2 cups (350 mL) room temperature water
    Additional bread flour, extra-virgin olive oil, and salt

    In large bowl, mix together flours, salt, sugar, and active dry yeast. Stir in water until everything is moist. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 12 to 15 hours. Dough should be more than double in volume and appear very loose.

    Generously flour work surface and scrape out dough. Fold dough over itself three to four times until you have a soft, flattened ball of dough. Clean bowl and grease with olive oil. Place dough in bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with towel or plastic wrap and let rise again for 2 hours.

    Preheat oven to 500 F (260 C). Generously flour work surface and scrape out dough.  Slice dough into 4 equal pieces. Lightly oil baking sheet. Take each quarter of dough and stretch out to almost fit the length of the pan, leaving about 1/2 inch (1 cm) between each loaf; they will be thin at this point. Brush loaves with light coating of olive oil and let rise again for 30 minutes.

    Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until dark golden brown on top. You may need to rotate pans halfway if bread is cooking unevenly. Allow to cool for 30 minutes on wire rack.   Slice each loaf in half through middle and then slice each of the 8 pieces in half lengthwise. You will have 16 slices of thin bread.

    Serves 8.

    Each serving contains: 167 calories; 5 g protein; 6 g total fat (1 g sat. fat, 0 g trans fat); 25 g carbohydrates; 4 g fibre; 293 mg sodium

    source: "The Humble Sandwich", alive #347, September 2011

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