Friday, September 28, 2012


This is my go to recipe for making chewy on the inside and crunchy on the outside focaccia that all my friends go nutty for.  With a hint of garlic and rosemary, and a generous sprinkling of Parmesan cheese, what is not to like?

For the herb flavored oil:
Start by placing 1/2 cup of EVOO, one thinly sliced garlic clove, about a tablespoon full of fresh rosemary leaves and 1/4 tsp of Italian seasoning in a small sauce pot and warming over low heat.  As soon as you see some sizzling in the pan, turn the heat off and let the herbs steep in the oil.

For the focaccia:  
Place 2 tsp of rapid-rising dry yeast and 2 tablespoons of sugar in the bowl of your stand mixer.  Add a cup of lukewarm water to the the bowl and let the yeast get going.  I usually walk away from the bowl for at least 10 minutes.  Just remember that if your water is too warm it will kill the yeast.  Place the dough hook on your  mixer and add about 2 cups of flour.  Turn mixer on low and let it go til you have a gooey little sponge of dough.  At this point add 1/4 cup of olive oil, and continue to let the mixer go.  Once the oil is incorporated add another 1 1/2 to 2 cups of flour to the dough along with a sprinkling of good salt (about 2 tsp.) and let it go until the flour is well incorporated and the salt well distributed (about 5 minutes).  This dough is going to be soft.  Remove the bowl from the mixer and cover with a damp towel.  Allow to rise for 30 minutes.  Punch down the dough and divide in to two equal pieces.  Put each piece in a 9 inch cake pan, and stretch it to fit.  Allow to rise another 15 minutes and then dimple the dough with you fingers.  Pour half of the oil mixture on to each piece of dough, and place in a 425 degree oven and bake for 10 minutes.  Add 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese to the top of each loaf, and allow to cook for an additional 5 minutes.

Remove from oven and allow to cool for about 5 minutes in the pan before setting them out on a cooling rack.  

This makes AMAZING sandwiches, though I must confess that there have been times that my family devoured a whole loaf before it ever was able to cool off.  I have also made this focaccia with white whole wheat flour with good results.  I am going to try to make a whole grain version soon!

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