Semelle are little rolls from Florence.
Adapted from The Italian Baker by Carol Field
- 2 1/4 tsp (1 packet) active dry yeast
- 1 1/4 cups warm water
- 3-3 1/2 cups white flour
- 2 tsp salt
- Olive oil for brushing
Stir the yeast into the water and let stand until creamy. Add 3 cups flour. Mix until the dough is solid and elastic – 6-8 minutes – adding additional flour, if needed.
Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover, and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
Shaping and Second Rise.
Cut the dough into ten equal pieces and shape each piece into a ball. Brush a little oil over each and let rest 10 minutes under a towel.
With the edge of your hand, make a deep indentation down the center of each ball – be sure to press down firmly.
Place the rolls, cleft side down, on floured parchment paper. Cover with a towel and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Just before baking, turn each roll over and reemphasize the cleft. Place the rolls – cleft side up – on a baking sheet dusted with corn meal.
Bake 15 to 18 minutes, spraying the rolls three times with water in the first 10 minutes.