Bolo do Caco – Portuguese Bread

Try out this delicious pan cooked bread traditional to the Portuguese island of Madeira.


Portuguese Bolo do Caco bread from Madeira Island

Bolo do Caco - Portuguese Bread

Try out this delicious pan cooked bread traditional to the Portuguese island of Madeira.
Rate this recipe!
Prep Time 8 hours
Cook Time 15 minutes
Course Appetizer, Bread
Cuisine Portuguese
Servings 6


  • 4 cups bread flour
  • cup warm water 105-115°F
  • ½ cup sweet potato peeled, ½" chunks
  • tsp salt
  • 1 tsp yeast
  • 1 pinch sugar


  • Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add potatoes and cook for 10 minutes until tender. Strain potatoes. Mash into a smooth consistency. Add water a small pinch of sugar and yeast into the potato mixture. Let sit for 5 minute to re-hydrate the yeast. Add in flour. Stir to combine. If there is flour that is not incorporating, add 1 tablespoon of water more. Continuing until flour is incorporated. The dough should be slightly sticky. With the dough in a bowl cover dough with plastic and bowl with a dish towel and let sit for about 1 hour.
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  • After one hour, work in the salt by stretching and folding the dough over it self. Do this about 10 times. Using the same piece of plastic wrap, cover the dough and let sit for about 2 hours.
  • Stretch and fold the dough again about 10 times. Cover. Wait at least 30 minutes and up to 2-3 hours until the next stretch and fold. Repeat this process until you have done at least 4 rounds of stretch and fold.
    After the second stretch and fold round, you can refrigerate the dough for up to 24 hours and then continue the process the next day. *From the time you mix the flour and the water the dough should spend 5-10 hours at room temperature.
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  • After you have done at least 4 stretch and fold rounds, you will shape the dough. Use a pie pan or plate with a slight rim. You can line the mold with parchment paper or sprinkle it with flour to prevent it from sticking. Divide the dough into 3 evenly balls. Flatten each ball into an 8-10" circle, using a rolling pin or your hands. Let the dough rise in your chosen mold for 1-2 hours, while covered.
  • Add a little bit of oil into a hot skillet (cast iron or carbon steel is best). Place the bread into the pan. After about 2 minutes at high heat, reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook for another 3 minutes then flip. Turn the heat to the lowest setting and cook on the second side for about 6 minutes. Bread should be anywhere form ¾-1½" thick. The internal temperature for the bread should be between 195-210°F.
  • To serve, cut in half horizontally to form two thin discs. Cut each disc into 4 slices. Spread garlic and butter onto each slice. Enjoy!


In a pinch, you can substitute the sweet potato with a russet potato. 
This recipe is about a 77% hydration bread. 
  • Bread flour 1000 g
  • Water 550 g
  • Sweet Potato 256 g
  • Salt 25 g
  • Yeast 5 g
  • bread making
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Keyword Bolo do Caco, bread, Madeira, Madeira island bread, Portuguese, Portuguese bread
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Portuguese / Keto / Seafood / Vegetarian / Breakfast / Dinner

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Hello, I'm Michael!

I aspire to share recipes that you and your family can enjoy while also learning about cooking fundamentals along the way. I attended the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco, CA and now enjoy cooking as a hobby.

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