Check the weather forecast before making this Italian bread; it uses a starter (called a “biga”) that needs to be made the night before. I use a bread machine for both the starter and the dough. If your bread baking skills are better than mine a stand mixer would probably work too. You will also need a baking stone that fits in the Global Sun Oven’s cooking chamber. I remove the leveling tray and use a pizza stone.

Pane all’Olio di Oliva


For the Biga (starter)

7 Tbs water
1 1/2 cups white bread flour
1 tsp rapid-rise active dry yeast

For the Dough

6 Tbs water
4 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
2 cups white bread flour, plus extra for dusting
2 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar


Pour the water for the biga into the bread machine pan. Sprinkle the flour over, covering the water. Make a shallow indentation in the center of the flour and add the yeast. Set the machine to the dough setting. Press start. When the dough cycle has finished, switch the machine off, but leave the biga inside, with the lid closed for 8 hours.

Place the Global Sun Oven with a baking stone in the cooking chamber out to preheat.

Remove the bread pan from the machine. Break the biga into three or four pieces. Pour in the water and the olive oil. Sprinkle the flour over, covering the liquid. Add the salt and sugar in separate corners of the bread pan. Set the bread machine to the dough setting. Press start.

Lightly flour peel or baking sheet. When the dough cycle has finished, place the dough on a lightly floured surface. Punch it down gently, then shape it into a plump round. Using the palms of your hands, gently roll the dough backward and forward until it forms a tapered, torpedo-shaped loaf about 12 inches long. Place the loaf on the prepared peel or baking sheet and cover it with lightly oiled plastic wrap. Let it rise in a warm place for 45-60 minutes, or until the dough has almost doubled in size.  Dust the top of the bread lightly with flour and slash it along its length. Transfer the bread to the hot baking stone. Mist the inside of the GSO with water. Close the glass lid. Bake for approximately 1 1/2 half hours or until it is golden all over and the bread sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom. Cool on a wire rack.

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