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Pane Siciliano - Sicilian bread, or Sicilian Scroll Bread.
The shape is very distinctive. In Sicily, the 'S' shape is known as the Occhi dei Santa Lucia, but to translate it as 'the Saint Lucy Snail' is to lose every last vestige of the romantic nature of the Italian tongue.
This is a bread that blends semolina and strong white bread flour.
115 gms strong white bread flour
450 gms fine semolina flour or finely ground semolina
30 gms extra virgin olive oil
10 gms crushed sea salt
7 gms active yeast
360 gms lukewarm water
and for the topping
white sesame seeds (or black and white sesame seeds mixed)
a little weak salt wash (1 tablespoon boiling water and ½ teaspoon salt - mixed)
Mix the flours and salt together in a large bowl.
Add the yeast and mix thoroughly.
Slowly add the oil and the water and bring together into a sticky dough.
Turn the dough out onto a un-floured board and knead until you have a silky dough.
Place in a lightly-oiled bowl, cover and leave in a warm place until it has doubled in volume.
Turn out onto a lightly floured board and knock back.
Place on a prepared baking sheet, cover and leave in a warm place for about 40 minutes until it has doubled in size.
Preheat the oven to 220⁰C (425⁰F)
Brush the top of the 'S' with a weak saltwater wash and sprinkle generously with sesame seeds.
Remove the water or mist again and drop the heat to 200⁰C (400⁰F) and continue to bake for 25 minutes or until the bread is golden brown and hollow when tapped underneath.
Cool on a rack.