Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Rosemary Focaccia Recipe

This recipe is adapted from a book we recently got as a gift, and are LOVING, called The Art Of Simple Food. The focaccia is easy to make and filled the house with a delicious smell of fresh rosemary.

rosemary foccacia

2 tsp dry yeast
1/2 c lukewarm water
pinch of sugar
3 1/2 c unbleached white flour
1/4 c rye flour
2 T chopped fresh rosemary
1 tsp salt
3/4 c cold water
olive oil
coarse sea salt

Stir together yeast & warm water. Add a pinch of sugar. Add 1/4 c white flour & 1/4 c rye flour. Let mixture sit until bubbly for about 30 minutes.

In a seperate bowl, mix 3 1/4 c white flour, rosemary, and salt. Add to bubbly yeast mixture. Add cold water and 1/4 c olive oil. Mix thouroughly by hand or in an electric stand mixer. If mixing by hand, do so on a lightly floured surface for about 5 minutes until dough is soft and elastic. If it is sticky add a small amount of flour (not too much, it should remain very soft). If using a mixture, use the dough hook and knead for 5 minutes until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl.

Put the dough in a large bowl and cover with a damp cloth to let rise in a warm place for about 2 hours. It should double in size. We let it rise in a warm oven that we had warmed on the lowest setting and then turned off before putting in the dough.

Once the dough has risen, gently remove it from the bowl and flatten it on a well oiled sheet pan (10" x 15") by gently pressing down from the center out towards the edges. If the dough resists or springs back, let it rest for 10 minutes and then continue shaping. Do not deflate or smash the dough. If you have a pizza peel you can simply flaten the dough on a floured surface instead of a sheet pan and use it to move to the oven.

This is a pizza peel for those who don't already have one:

Pizza Peel Each

Next, put dimples in the dough with your fingers. Like this:

Drizzle the dough with olive oil (about 2 T). Cover dough with damp cloth and allow it to rise again for 2 hours, until it is double in size.

While the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 450 (just make sure the dough is not in there!) If you have one, place a pizza stone on the lower rack and let it heat for 30 minutes.

Before baking the bread, sprinkle the dough with 1 tsp coarse sea salt. Put the baking pan or just the dough directly on the pizza stone. Bake focaccia 20-25 minutes until golden and crisp. Remove bread from pan and cool on a wire cooling rack. Best if eaten warm from the oven.

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