Combine all the ingredients except the oil in a powerful mixer and mix with the dough-hook attachment until just combined.
Let the mixture rest for 10 minutes. Now start beating the batter, still with the dough-hook attachment. Initially it will be runny, but within 10–20 minutes it will become a sticky dough.
It is ready when it separates from the sides and bottom of the bowl completely, leaving a smooth surface and starts climbing up the hook. Place the dough into a well-oiled bowl and let it rise for about 2½ hours until three times the volume.
Scrape the dough onto a floured surface and cut it into 3 pieces. Drizzle over some oil and dust with lots of flour. Let the dough rest for another 45 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 260 °C and line a baking tray with greaseproof paper. After 45 minutes, the dough should be puffy and wobbly. Stretch each piece into a ciabatta shape then flip them upside down (this redistributes the bubbles, so you get even bubbles throughout) onto the lined baking tray.
Bake for 15–20 minutes, rotating the tray 180 degrees halfway through.Extracted from “Confessions of a Hungry Woman” by Sam Woulidge (Random House Struik)Recipe prepared by Johan van Zyl and Peter van Noord, recipe originally published online by Jason Molina.