Breadsticks make a great snack, on their own or with something to dip them in, and the homemade sort is so much nicer than some old stuff out of a plastic package.
Breadsticks are fairly easy to prepare as they only require a quick kneading, but for the best flavour they are ideally made with a preferment or some old dough that has had time to develop. In this recipe I make use of the sourdough culture that one might otherwise discard whilst refreshing the culture. I maintain my sourdough culture at 100% hydration, so adjust the recipe as needed if using one at a different hydration.
With the sourdough and the addition of a little olive oil these breadsticks have superb flavour and texture, and fresh from the oven are not likely to hang around for long.
Check out the videos page, where you can see these being made.
- 200g sourdough culture (prepared with 100g flour and 100g water)
- 100g white wheat flour
- 20g water
- 20g olive oil
- 4g salt
Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl, mixing until there are no lumps of dry flour. Leave for 20 minutes to allow the flour to absorb the water.
Dust the worktop with flour and tip out the dough. Knead in the conventional manner, using the heal of the hand to stretch the dough. Add a little more flour as necessary.
When the dough is smooth and reasonably elastic, which should take a few minutes, cover and leave to ferment until approximately doubled in size; this should take several hours.
Dust a baking sheet with semolina to prevent sticking. Dust the worktop with semolina and tip out the dough, sprinkling more semolina on top. Pat and pull the dough into a flat rectangular shape.
Cut strips of dough using a dough scraper and stretch out gently by pulling through the fingers until the desired shape is achieved. Arrange on the baking sheet to prove.
Set the oven to 220°C and leave to heat for 30 minutes or so while the breadsticks prove.
Bake the breadsticks for approximately 15 minutes, until golden brown and crisp.