Night Before Sponge
11/2 cups water
¬1/2 teaspoon dry yeast or ¬1/4 ounce fresh
1 ¬1/2 cups, approximately unbleached bread flour
All of the sponge
2 cups water
¬1/2 teaspoon dry yeast or ¬1/2 ounce fresh
2 ¬3/4 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons sugar
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
3 cups Molina Pizzutti 00 Flour
3 cups bread flour
The night before, in a medium bowl, whisk together the water and yeast to blend; then stir in the flour to make a very thick batter. Cover lightly with a tea towel and let this sponge develop overnight.
The next day (or anywhere from 8-12 hours later; if beyond that, refrigerate, and use as the basis for a sourdough starter), stir sponge down.
In a large bowl, or bowl of an electric mixer, scoop out the sponge and blend it with the water and yeast. Then add one cup of the flour on top of this, then sprinkle on the salt, sugar, and oil and blend well. Stir in most of the flour, until you have a messy batter for just a few minutes. Let this rest 20 minutes, lightly covered. Then mix, or start kneading, by hand or using the dough hook, to make a very soft, slack dough, 8-10 minutes on slow speed of mixer, adding in only enough flour to make it barely mangeable.
Gather dough into a mass in the center of the bowl. Spray with nonstick cooking spray and insert the entire bowl in a large plastic bag and tie loosely. Let rise 2-4 hours or until 70 % puffier.
Line a doubled up baking sheet with parchment paper and smear the bottom with olive oil. Set aside.
Ease the dough out of the bowl and onto the baking sheet. It will be slightly risen and slack. Using your fingertips, drag ends of the dough into the center to gather into a more respectable mass or oval/circle. You are picking up the ends, essentially, and bringing them up and over and pressing them in place slightly. The object is the make a more cohesive shape without pressing the air out of the dough or working it again.
Cover with a large plastic sheet and let rise about 2 hours or so or until almost doubled in size.
Preheat oven to 450 F.
Place dough inside and bake about 30 minutes, until puffed up and well browned, spraying with water a few times in the first 5 minutes.
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