I was hoping to bring this bread to my book club on Sunday . . . until I read Saturday morning that it's actually a THREE day bread! Sad news for the book club, happy news for my lunch bunch at work, who got to enjoy a loaf today!
This bread starts with a pâte fermentée (again). Saturday morning, I mixed it with the rest of the ingredients . . . all very similar to past breads, except that this time, the flour included semolina. I also added a little extra vital wheat gluten, as Peter Reinhart suggests using high-gluten flour. Apparently semolina is not high in gluten. I mixed everything up in my KA, and I was glad I did because it was a very tacky dough . . . almost to the point of stickiness. In fact, if I had made this in my earlier bread baking days (when I thought that all dough should be perfectly smooth, not sticky at all), I probably would've added a ton more flour. But I have gotten accustomed to stickier dough, so I let it ferment for a little over an hour and then proceeded to shape it.
This dough was also unusual in its shaping: first into a batard, then a baguette, then curled in to an S.
Then I spritzed it with water, sprinkled it with sesame seeds, and placed the pan into the fridge over night. This morning, I just took it out of the fridge, popped it into the oven, and:
They were beautiful. I think this is probably the most beautiful bread I've ever baked. The crumb was tighter than I was expecting, but the flavor was really nice, almost a little nutty, and the texture was soft and creamy. I would be very happy to make Pane Siciliano again!