250g(1 ⅔ cups) strong bread flour(with at least 11% protein)
250g(1 ⅔ cups) all purpose flour
100g(1 cup) pecorino cheese(grated)
100g(1 cup) parmigiano cheese(grated)
50g(¼ cup) extra virgin olive oil
50g(¼ cup) pork lard(or shortening, or butter)
100mllukewarm water(a little less than ½ cup)
25gfresh yeast(or 2 ¼ tsp of dry active yeast)
1tspmalt extract(or honey)
black pepper(to taste)
Place the water on a bowl or glass, add malt extract and yeast. Mix until everything is combined.
In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, place flours and make a deep well in the center.
Add water and yeast mixture and mix lightly to make a runny dough (poolish). Cover with flour.
Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel and place it in a warm zone. Let it rest for 30 minutes.
Mix eggs with olive oil, parmigiano and pecorino cheese, salt and freshly ground black pepper until everything is combined.
Add the eggs mixture to the bowl with flour and knead for 2 minutes in your stand mixer.
Add lard (or butter) and keep kneading at medium speed for 5 more minutes. You’ll end with a sticky dough like the one on the photo below.
Cover with a kitchen towel and let it proof until doubled in size (about 2 hours).
Grease a 6.5″ (16 cm) large and 8″(20 cm) deep aluminum pan with olive oil. If you don’t have a similar pan, you can use parchment paper to line it and make it deeper, as seen in the photo below.
Slightly oil your hands and carefully, transfer the dough to the pan and let it proof again until doubled in size (about 1 hour).
Heat the oven to 375 °F (190 °C), once the oven has reached the indicated temperature, open it and pour half a glass of water on the bottom of the oven to create steam (or use the steam function if your oven has it).
Place the pan into the oven and bake for 50 minutes or until the surface has an even golden color and when you insert a toothpick in the bread it comes out clean.
All the ingredients have to be at room temperature or at least not straight from the fridge, especially butter and eggs.
The water needs to be lukewarm, not hot or it can kill the yeast and preven the dough from raising.
You can also use a panettone paper pan. The important thing is that it should have high edges because the dough raise at least twice its size.
Pecorino is a cheese with a strong flavor, if you are not used to it, it is best to decrease the amount and replace it with parmigiano cheese.
This crescia di pasqua is more delicious if it is made at least two to three days in advance.
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