Cosi Tomato, Basil and Mozzarella Flatbread Sandwiches

For the flatbread:

1 1/4-ounce packet active dry yeast
Pinch of sugar
3 cups bread flour, plus more for dusting
Kosher salt
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing

For the dressing:

3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
3 teaspoons dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
Pinch of sugar
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

For the sandwiches:

4 medium tomatoes, sliced (about 1 1/4 pounds)
1 1/2 pounds fresh mozzarella, sliced
16 to 20 fresh basil leaves
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

Make the flatbread: Stir the yeast, sugar and 1 1/2 cups warm water (about 110 degrees F) in a bowl. Let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes. Whisk the flour and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt in a large bowl. Add the yeast mixture and olive oil and mix with your hands into a smooth dough. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap; set aside in a warm place until the dough doubles in size, about 1 hour.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until slightly elastic, dusting with more flour if the dough is too sticky to handle, about 5 minutes. Return the dough to the bowl, cover and set aside again until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

Brush 2 baking sheets with olive oil. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, dusting with more flour if needed. Cut the dough in half and form into 2 balls. Roll out each ball into a 12-by-3-inch rectangle, about 1/2 inch thick. Transfer each dough rectangle to one of the prepared baking sheets and let rest, uncovered, until a dry crust forms on top, 1 hour, 30 minutes to 2 hours.

Meanwhile, position racks in the middle and lower thirds of the oven. Place a pizza stone or inverted baking sheet on the bottom rack and preheat to 475 degrees F for at least 40 minutes.

Press your fingertips through the dry crust on top of the dough to create a spotted pattern. Gently stretch each piece of dough into a 14-by-4-inch rectangle, then brush the tops with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Put 1 baking sheet of dough on the pizza stone and bake until the bottom of the bread is golden brown, about 7 minutes. Transfer to the middle rack and continue baking until golden all over, about 5 more minutes. Remove from the oven and immediately brush the top of the bread with olive oil and sprinkle with salt; let cool on the baking sheet on a rack. Repeat with the remaining dough.

Make the dressing: Whisk the vinegar, mustard and dried basil in a bowl. Add the sugar and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Slowly whisk in the olive oil.

Assemble the sandwiches: Slice each flatbread in half horizontally and brush with the dressing. Top the bread bottoms with the tomatoes, mozzarella and basil leaves. Season with salt and pepper and cover with the bread tops. Cut into pieces.

I have been making ciabatta and this sounds that it would be great on ciabatta. Thanks.

You’re welcome, will you post your Ciabatta recipe?

I would, but I buy some ciabatta mix from a commercial supplier. The recipe is AP flour, Ciabatta mix, water, yeast and Olive oil. I am not sure what’s in the ciabatta mix as there are no ingredients listed on the package.

Poolish (Sponge):

1 cup white flour
1/2 cup water
Pinch yeast

Final dough:

2cups White flour
1 1/4 cups +1 Tbs water
1 4/5 tsp Salt
1/8 tsp Instant yeast

The night before, dissolve the yeast into the water for the poolish, and then mix in the flour. Cover and let it ferment at room temperature for 12-16 hours. Once the poolish has bubbles breaking on top and has started to wrinkle, it’s ready. It’ll also smell … really nice - sweet and nutty.

For the final dough, measure out the water and pour it into the poolish to loosen it up. Then pour the entire mixture into a bowl. Mix together the salt, yeast and flour, and then add it to the bowl as well. Mix it all up with a spoon and let it sit for one hour. At one hour, give it a stretch and fold, followed by two more every 30 minutes. Then let it ferment for another hour or two, for a total of 3-4 hours bulk fermentation.

Remove the dough onto a well-floured surface, and gently pat it out into a rectangle, carefully degassing any truly gigantic bubbles that you notice. That’s it. No more shaping required. Let it rest, covered, for about 90 minutes.

Dimple the loaf with wet fingers all the way across and almost all the way through to the bottom of the loaf. Load onto a hot stone at 460 degrees with steam and bake for about 35 to 40 minutes. Let it rest one hour before slicing.