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Ciabatta Bread: Savory Herb and Olive Recipe

Updated on July 30, 2013
Savory Herb and Olive Ciabatta Bread
Savory Herb and Olive Ciabatta Bread | Source

“If thou tastest a crust of bread, thou tastest all the stars and all the heavens.”
--Robert Browning

The Celebration of Bread

There are so many wonderful types of breads today. What is so unique about bread recipes is that they stem from the cultural to the family traditional. Do you have a recipe that was passed down to you from a grandmother? Or perhaps you are from a country that bakes your bread a certain way! Breads are to be worshiped for their authenticity; Flat, rolls, loaf, buns, sour dough, olive, herb, herb & cheese, ciabatta, french... the possibilities are endless! The next time you set out to bake bread..take a chance, be creative; make your own recipe, write it down and pass it on! Hmmm I can smell it in the oven already!


"Sponge" Ingredients


Prep and Baking Time for Savory Herb Ciabatta Bread

Prep time: 4 hours
Cook time: 1 hour
Ready in: 5 hours
Yields: 24 Servings

Savory Herb and Olive Ciabatta Bread

This recipe requires 1 day of preparation, but only takes minutes to prepare.

This crusty, airy bread takes its name from the Italian word for “slipper”, which the loaf resembles.

This recipe includes the technique of making a sponge (a day-before bread starter) that gives the loaf density along with a tangy flavor.

Make the Sponge 1 day before:


· ¾ cup water

· 1 teaspoon sugar

· ½ teaspoon active dry yeast

· 1 cup bread flour

1. To prepare the sponge, in a medium bowl, combine the water, sugar, and yeast; let stand (5 minutes). Stir in the flour until combined.

2. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

3. Remove from the refrigerator and let come to room temperature (about 1 hour).


Bread Ingredients


Bread Ingredients

  • ½ cup warm water, (110-115°F)
  • ¼ cup fat free milk, (110-115°F)
  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 2 cups bread flour, (plus a little extra for dusting)
  • 1 Tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 25 Kalamata olives, pitted
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary, OR 1 teaspoon (dried, crumbled)
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh marjoram, OR 1 teaspoon (dried)
  • 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt

Tip for Really Good Ciabatta

Be sure your dough is really wet and sticky~

Be careful NOT to add extra flour just because
the dough seems too wet and tacky....
This is exactly what you want!

Tip for Mixing Dough by Hand

  • In a large bowl, combine water, honey and yeast: set aside until foamy.
  • Stir in the all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, and salt until the dough
    starts to gather around the spoon.
  • Turn the dough on a lightly floured surface; knead until the dough is smooth
    and elastic (about 10 minutes)

Nutritional Value for Savory Herb and Olive Ciabatta Bread

Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1 Slice
Calories 100
Calories from Fat18
% Daily Value *
Fat 2 g3%
Saturated fat 0 g
Unsaturated fat 0 g
Carbohydrates 20 g7%
Sugar 1 g
Fiber 3 g12%
Protein 3 g6%
Cholesterol 0 mg
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

Instructions for Bread

  1. To prepare the bread, in a small bowl, combine the warm water, milk, and yeast (Let stand 5 minutes)
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine the yeast mixture, sponge, bread flour, oil, olives, rosemary, and marjoram; mix on medium speed (10 minutes or until the dough becomes sticky)
  3. Add the salt (mix 5 minutes longer)
  4. Scrape the dough into a bowl that has been coated with non-stick cooking spray.
  5. Cover loosely with plastic wrap or a damp towel and let it rise in a warm, draft free place until the dough doubles in volume (approximately 1 hour)
  6. Heavily flour 2 baking sheets and set aside.
  7. Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface and divide in half.
  8. Working one half at a time, transfer dough to the prepared baking sheet and stretch it into an irregular 11x4 inch rectangle. (Repeat with the other dough half and 2nd baking sheet)
  9. Dust both loaves and cover with plastic wrap that has been coated with non-stick spray.
  10. Allow the loaves to rise in a warm, draft-free place until they nearly double in volume (1- ½ Hours)
  11. Preheat oven to 425°F 20 minutes before baking.
  12. Bake the ciabatta, 1 at a time, until lightly golden (20-25 Minutes)
  13. Transfer loaves to a wire rack and cool before cutting.

How would you rate this recipe?

Cast your vote for Savory Herb and Olive Ciabatta Bread
Elizabeth Rayen
Elizabeth Rayen | Source

About the Author

Lisa has directed and acted in musical theatre for nearly 30 years. Her musical upbringing allowed her to pursue her career in teaching and directing and continues to direct shows today. As the owner of 2 online Home Décor sites, Lisa’s passion for Rustic Living all begins with her love for the home, outdoors, and her many hobbies. Lisa loves to laugh, and she share’s that love through her comedic hubs centered on her MOM.Lisa’s passions include writing, directing, acting, photography, singing, cooking, crafts, gardening, and home improvement, including decorating. Lisa also writes under her penned name, Elizabeth Rayen.

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Comments: Savory Herb and Olive Ciabatta Bread

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    • Rusticliving profile image

      Elizabeth Rayen 13 months ago from California

      Dear FBT.... PLEASE let me know how it comes out if you try it! I was just thinking about the same thing a couple of days ago when I pulled out the recipe. I LOVE sourdough. Cheers! - Lisa

    • FatBoyThin profile image

      Colin Garrow 2 years ago from Kinneff, Scotland

      This sounds lovely, but I wonder if it would work with sourdough instead of the sponge/yeast? Worth a go , anyway. Great Hub, voted up.

    • Rusticliving profile image

      Elizabeth Rayen 5 years ago from California

      Thank you Cindy! It is a really delicious bread. great with salads. ♥

    • homesteadbound profile image

      Cindy Murdoch 5 years ago from Texas

      This sounds truly amazing. I will have to try this soon!

    • Rusticliving profile image

      Elizabeth Rayen 5 years ago from California

      I believe you can handle anything Lord! ; )

      I'm glad you are enjoying my recipe hubs. I'm enjoying the fact that I can share my favorites with everyone! :)

    • Lord De Cross profile image

      Joseph De Cross 5 years ago

      Wow! Rustic!!

      This feel like the food network! Olive Ciabatta's and those hearty Honey-Wheat Crescent Rolls!! are a God gifted recipe. If I can handle the second law of thermodynamics and Laplace differentials, then I can follow the instructions and preparation..!