GRISSINO TORINESI STIRATO or IL GRISSINO
(Breadsticks - Stretched as in Turin & Rolled)
The following Ingredients are adapted from a Molino SIMA recipe booklet and Il Pane by Maurizio Mascarin and Walter Pizzolato.
1 3/4 Tsp. Yeast - active dry or 7/10 sm. cake yeast (12 grams 1/4 Cup Water - warm (59 ml) 1 Cup + Water - (266 ml) [See note 1] 3 2/4 Cups Flour - unbleached all purpose (500 grams) 2 Tsp. Malt syrup (10 grams) 2 Tbl. Strutto or lard (30 grams) - [See note 2] 1 Tbl. Olive oil - Extra Virgin (15 grams) 1 1/2 Tsp. Salt (7.5 grams) 1/2 Cup Flour - Semolina (optional) [See note 3]
Note 1: Il Pane by Silvana Franconeri and Chiara Scudelotti contains a recipe for grissini casalinghi that includes milk instead of water and does not include strutto.
Note 2: As in the note above, strutto or lard is not always included in Italian language recipes for grissini. Note 3:This ingredient may be used to sprinkle the dough before cutting and stretching it into grissini. It is not used if the grissini will be sprinkled with seeds or herbs.
Procedure For The Dough
Dissolve the yeast in 1/4 cup water and allow it to stand for approximately 5-10 minutes. Place the flour (3 3/4 cups) on the work surface (or in a large bowl) and make a well in the center. Gradually add the dissolved yeast and the additional water (1 cup plus 2 tablespoons) to the flour mixing well between additions. Continue to mix until the dough begins to hold together. Knead the dough to a soft consistency (approximately 5 minutes).
Add the strutto (or lard), extra-virgin olive oil, and salt and continue to knead until the dough is smooth and elastic (approximately 10 minutes).
Place the dough in a lightly floured bowl. Allow the dough to rise until it is double its original size (approximately 1 hour).
Shaping and Baking Techniques
Technique 1 contains instructions for shaping, cutting, and rolling 1/4 inch wide breadsticks, and is excerpted from a recipe by Jane Salzfass Freiman originally published in the San Francisco Chronicle.
Technique 2 is excerpted from The Bread Book by Linda Collister and Anthony Blake, and contains instructions for shaping, cutting, and stretching 1/2 inch wide breadsticks.
Technique 3 contains instructions for shaping, cutting, and stretching "fat finger" wide breadsticks, it is excerpted from The Italian Baker by Carol Field. This technique contains instructions to begin shaping the dough prior to the first rise.
Lightly flour work surface. Remove dough from bowl without kneading and press out air. Divide dough into 2 pieces. Roll each piece of the dough into a 7 x 9-inch rectangle. Using the plain wheel of a ravioli cutter, cut dough lengthwise into 1/4 inch wide strips. Roll strips between hands to round edges without twisting the dough. Transfer strips to a baking sheet and repeat to cut all breadsticks.
Adjust oven rack to middle position. Heat oven to 400F. Bake breadsticks for 15 to 18 minutes, or until crisp and brown.
During the last 15 minutes of rising, heat the oven to 450F.
Punch down the risen dough. Roll it out on a lightly floured work surface with a lightly floured rolling pin to about 1/4 inch thick.
Using a sharp knife, cut the rectangle in half lengthwise to make two long, narrow rectangles. Slice each rectangle crosswise into strips 1/2 inch wide. Using your hands, roll and stretch each strip until it is about 10 inches long. Place on the prepared baking sheets. Work as quickly as possible, as the grissini should be baked as soon as they are shaped. Do not give the dough a second rising
Bake the grissini for 12 to 20 minutes, depending on how crispy you like them. Turn them over halfway through baking so they brown evenly. Transfer the grissini to wire racks to cool completely.
Pat the dough with yours hands into a 14 x 4-inch rectangle on a well-floured surface. Lightly brush the top with oil. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled, about I hour,
Sprinkle the dough with semolina flour before cutting and stretching. Cut the dough crosswise into 4 equal sections, and then cut each section crosswise again into 5 strips, each about the width of a fat finger. The dough is so elastic that you can simply pick up each piece and stretch it between your hands to fit the width of a baking sheet. Place the breadsticks, several inches apart on lightly oiled baking sheets (unless they are rimless, it easier to use the backs of the baking sheets).
Heat the oven to 400F. If you are using a baking stone, turn the oven on 30 minutes before baking. Bake the breadsticks for 20 minutes. If you like crunchy breadsticks, bake directly on the baking stone, which has been sprinkled with cornmeal or semolina, for the last 5 minutes. Cool on racks.
These variations were adapted from English language recipes.
Seeded Breadsticks. Sprinkle the dough with 1/2 cup sesame or poppy seeds before cutting and rolling or stretching.
Tomato Breadsticks. Add 2 tablespoons drained and chopped oil-packed or rehydrated sun-dried tomatoes when the strutto or lard, extra-virgin olive oil and salt are added to the dough.
Herb Breadsticks. Add 3 tablespoons fresh or I tablespoon dried rosemary, thyme, or sage when the strutto or lard, extra-virgin olive oil and salt are added to the dough.
Parmesan Breadsticks. Add 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese when the strutto or lard, extra-virgin olive oil and salt are added to the dough. Parmesan cheese can be combined with an herb (rosemary, thyme or sage), or hot pepper flakes and added to the dough with the strutto or lard, extra-virgin olive oil and salt.
Last updated on: 06/03/99 12:51:01 AM