Bready, Steady,Go to Umbria….

Today we are going to stay in Italy but we are going south of Lucca , to the beautiful City of Terni in Umbria. So we are out of Tuscany altogether. Terni is a quite a largish city, south of Assisi. Now the bread….

Terni Duomo

This is what it should look like …Terni Bread

Now if you are so inclined later, you may like to check out Terni yourself

But for now, onwards and upwards.

This recipe is from Carol Fields “Italian Baker”.

I have given it the odd tweak as I don’t have baking stones or an Italian bakers oven:) I wish!! But i was experimenting with pizza stones…Not a story for today 🙂

This bread takes 2 days , you could possibly make the Biga early in the morning and then do the second rise at night but its best to leave the Biga for 12-24+ hours.Traditionally it was salt less but not now, well not in this recipe but you will find traditional Italian recipes do still have it as  salt less.


  • 1/2 tsp yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 1 & 1/4 cups water room temperature.
  • 3 & 3/4 cups unbleached flour

Biga, Biga, Biga

  • Mix yeast and 1/4 cup warm water together.Put in warm place until creamy/ frothy.
  • When creamy add the 2nd lot of water and flour and mix well.
  • Cover with glad wrap and leave in room temperature 6-24 hours.
  • Remember the longer its left, the more developed the taste but not too long!!

Part Two:

  • 1/2 tsp yeast
  • 1/3 cup warm water
  • 1 cup room temperature water.
  • 3 cups of Biga
  • 1 & 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 & 1/3 cups all-purpose flour ( I used strong bread flour)
  • 4 tsp salt (optional)
  • Cornmeal for sprinkling.


  • Stir yeast into warm water , mix well and leave in a warm place until creamy/frothy (yes as above, you are not going mad!!)
  • Add the 2nd cup of water and the biga, gently stirring together until combined.
  • Add flour and salt (if you use it) and form a dough.
  • Knead on floured surface for about 8-10 minutes.

    End of second rise

First rise:

  • Place bread in oiled bowl and cover with glad wrap and leave until doubled,  2-3 hours.

Sprinkled ( ha a little bit carried away) with ground semolina

Second Rise:

  •  Turn out on a floured area, divide into 2 pieces and shape into rounds.
  • Place on baking tray . I like to use baking paper and then a sprinkle of flour.
  • Dimple the bread with your fingertips and oil the tops lightly
  • Cover with a tea towel and let rise until blistery looking with air bubbles, usually about 2 hours

Pre heat oven to 210 Celsius.

  • Bake 30-40 mins dependant on your oven, until golden brown.
  • put a baking tin at the bottom of the oven.
  • Spray the baking tin with water, 2-3 times in the first ten minutes of putting the bread in.
  • This helps keep the bread moist and supple yet develop a crust:)

    All ready to eat!!

Just had a thought, will put the Pizza stone at the bottom of the oven for spraying on….

  • Cool bread and eat while warm with lashings of butter & jam or avocado, fresh tomato and a slice of Pienza pecorino!! Heaven……..ohh and a piece or two of Sicilian HOT salame…….yum.
  • Nice used to as cubes in a salad, fresh not toasted as it’s quite chewy and rusticy
THE OUTCOME: Not bad, a wee bit more baking though for a deeper colour and a crustier crust:) Also a wee bit less of the sprinkle as well……Tastes really nice though, not an overwhelming sour taste but a hint. A little more second rising time too for a wee bit more airy bread.

Not bad at all.

I am experimenting using a rye flour at the moment, it won’t be Terni bread but it will be something.

This I think will tame the yeasty beasties for today>>>

Enjoy, enjoy and enjoy…..:)

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