Great British Bake Off | 5 Bread Week Recipes


This Italian classic is a delicious accompaniment to any meal: served warm with soup or salad, made into a decadent sandwich with prosciutto or salami, or my favourite – served with a selection of oils and olives.

It’s also relatively easy to make, but it’s important to use an electric mixer to ensure the correct dough consistency.

500g strong white bread flour, plus extra for dusting
10g salt
10g instant yeast
40ml olive oil
400 ml tepid water
Fine semolina for dusting (optional)
Makes 4 loaves


1. Lightly oil a 2-3 litre square plastic container
2. Put the flour, salt and yeast into a mixer fitted with a dough hook. Add the olive oil, and three-quarters of the water and start to mix on a slow speed
3. As the dough starts to come together, slowly add the remaining water. Then mix for a further 5-8 minutes on a medium speed, until the dough is smooth and stretchy
4. Tip the dough into the prepared plastic container, cover with a tea towel and leave to rise until it’s at least doubled in size – 1-2 hours or longer
5. Meanwhile, heat your oven to 220°C and line two baking trays with baking paper
6. Dust your work surface with flour, and semolina if you have some. Tip out the dough (it will be very wet), taking care to keep a rough square shape
7. Coat the top of the dough with more flour, then cut in half lengthways and divide each half into two strips to make 4 pieces of dough. Stretch each piece of dough lengthways a bit and place on prepared baking trays
8. Leave the dough to rest for a further 10 mins, then bake for 25 minutes – until the loaves are golden brown and sound hollow when tapped on the base
9. Cool on a wire rack.

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