Winter Weekend Bread

February 16, 2024

Winter weekends…a perfect time to fill the house with the smells of fresh baked bread. Is there anything better than waiting for a hot loaf to come out of the oven, cut open and slathered with butter or olive oil? One of my favorites is Carmelo’s Sicilian bread.

I owe my love of this bread to Sicilian bread maker Carmelo di Martino, who makes it weekly in his old wooden madio. Carmelo mixes a starter dough, the cresciuta, with semolina flour and water, then kneads the dough with his fists for close to 30 minutes to achieve an elegant smoothness. Then he free-forms it into round loaves to rise. A benneton (reed basket) can also be used to shape the dough before turning it out onto a hot baking stone or a cookie sheet for baking. This bread freezes very well. Start the cresciuta early on the day you plan to bake the bread, or make it the day before.

Get the recipe here.

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