The following Pagnotte di Enna recipe was adopted from theArtisan.net web site who adopted their recipe from the book, Scienza e Technologia della Panificazione by Prof. Giovanni Quaglia. The actual 100% whole durum flour bread pictured above was made via our esteemed contributor, Dr. K. In turn, this lovely recipe is many levels removed from Scordo but I, nonetheless, find the bread beautiful and mouth watering (entirely in the metaphysical, of course).
What I can tell you about the “real” world is that even in places like Sicilia the art of making bread at home is becoming a lost art and the bread you find in Sicilia and Calabria is similar to the bread you’ll find in a supermarket in Roma or Torino. So, I encourage everyone, with our without Italian ancestry, to make authentic recipes at home (whether it be tomato sauce or zeppole)
Here’s what you’ll need to make the bread:
- ¼ tsp. active dry yeast or 1/10th of a small cake yeast - (2 g.)
- ¼ cup of warm water -(60 ml)
- ¾ cup + 1 TblFlour - durum - (100g)
- 1 Tsp. active dry yeast or ¼ of a small cake yeast - (7 g)
- ¼ cup warm Water (60 ml)
- ¾ cup +2 Tbl.Water - 205 ml)
- All starter from above table - (160 g.)
- 3¼cupsof flour - durum - (400 g.)
- 1½tsp. salt - (7.5 g.)
- Again, entirely adopted (word by word from the theArtisan.net site). Also, as Dr. K. states, keep the following in mind when using whole grain flour:
- I added some vital wheat gluten, which is very helpful when using 100% freshly milled whole grain flour at developing the gluten network. Also, as with most whole grain flour recipes, I don't truly measure the flour. I mill enough for the recipe, but add a little at a time and wait for it to absorb. You want to keep the dough a little wet with whole grain flour, and typically adding the entire amount makes it dry and you end up with a brick. So I add and mix, and wait till it looks and feels right, and do the gluten windowpane test. I also incorporate a 5-10 minute rest during the first kneading to help the gluten network relax a bit.
- Dissolve the yeast in ¼ cup water and allow it to stand for approximately 5 -10 minutes. Add ¾ cup plus 1 tablespoon durum flour and mix until the flour is absorbed. The dough will be stiff. Cover the starter and allow it to remain at room temperature overnight.
- Dissolve the yeast in ¼ cup water and allow it to stand for approximately 5 -10 minutes. Break the starter into small pieces, and combine it with the dissolved yeast. Add the additional water (3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons at room temperature) to this mixture. Gradually add the flour (3¼ cups) and the salt (1½ Tsp.) and continue to mix until the dough begins to hold together. Knead the dough until it is smooth and elastic.
- Place the dough in a lightly floured bowl. Allow the dough to rest for 30 minutes.
- Gently turn the risen dough onto a flour dusted work surface. Dust a piece of canvas (untreated, 100% cotton), or a proofing board (lumber core plywood) with flour. Divide the dough into 2 or 4 portions. Beginning with one portion of dough, cup your hands beneath it gently folding sections toward the center as you roll it on the work surface until it is round. Turn this portion of dough over, gently rolling it on the work surface. Place the dough, rough side up, on the canvas or board. Repeat with the remaining portions of dough. Cover the dough with a cotton towel, allowing it to rise for 15 minutes.<
- After 15 minutes, gently press each portion of dough with your fingertips. Allow the dough to rise for an additional 60 - 70 minutes.
- As the dough is rising, place a baking stone in the oven , set the temperature to 500° F, and allow the oven to heat for 30 minutes.
- Ease your hands beneath the dough and turn it rough side down (upside down) onto a lightly floured sheet of parchment paper. Lower the oven temperature to 450° F. Slide a baker's peel beneath the parchment paper. Slide the parchment paper from the peel onto the baking stone. Quickly spray the oven walls using a plastic spray bottle filled with cold water. Spray again in 3 additional intervals within the first 15 minutes. Lower the oven to 400° F and allow the dough to bake until it is a deep golden color (approximately 15 more minutes). After the bread has been in the oven for a total of 20 - 25 minutes, check the oven to be certain that the dough is not browning too quickly. If this is the case, cover the loaf with foil.
- Remove the bread from the oven and allow it to cool on a rack.