This is actually not my favorite focaccia bread recipe, it’s only my second favorite. What a way to start off a post, huh?? *Teehee*
Well, my favorite focaccia bread is actually from Peter Reinhart’s The Bread Baker’s Apprentice Cookbook. Best bread I’ve ever eaten or made, period. But since I don’t normally have the time or inclination to spend a day and a half babysitting a starter and dough, this is the focaccia bread I turn to. And even though it’s only my second favorite, it’s still really good, I promise!
I absolutely love bread baking, from watching the yeast magically come alive to the wonderful aroma of the bread as it’s almost ready to come out of the oven. There’s nothing that gives me more joy or satisfaction in the kitchen.
Let’s get started on making this focaccia bread, shall we? Our yeast is proofed and waiting!
Sometimes I really enjoy kneading dough by hand, and sometimes I’m lazy and let the mixer do the work. Today was a lazy day. Pour the yeast mixture, oil, salt, & 3 1/4 cups flour into the bowl. Then mix away!
Smooth as a baby’s bottom. Put that into a greased bowl, making sure all sides are coated. Cover with a tea towel & let rise about 1 hour.
You know your dough has risen enough if, when you give it a poke, the indentation stays.
Punch the dough down then pat it out into a large rectangle on a greased baking sheet. Now it’s ready to do it’s rising thing again.
Once it’s thru with it’s second rising, use your fingers to make slight indentations in the dough. Just press down gently, you don’t want to completely deflate it.
Drizzle on your olive oil (I use a pastry brush to make sure the entire surface is well coated), then sprinkle on your rosemary and sea salt. Btw, I have a rosemary plant, but it’s small and I don’t know if it’ll survive the winter, so I only snipped about half the amount of rosemary called for in the recipe. If you have plenty to spare, then your dough should have a lot more rosemary on it than mine at this point.
Now it’s ready to go in the oven. Ohh the anticipation!
Oh my. Perfection.
One thing that I really love about this focaccia bread (besides the fact that it tastes great) is that it’s so versatile. You can top it with your favorite pizza ingredients and make a killer thick crust pizza. Or you can slice it in half horizontally and make equally delicious sandwiches (chicken salad on rosemary focaccia? Yes, please!) I made it to go along with a big pot of minestrone. Soo yummy dipped into that hot soupy goodness!
I hope the step by step pictorial will help some of you who may want to try this but aren’t experienced bakers. It really is easy. And I’m going to make an effort to do this more often with my recipes.
Here’s the complete recipe. Happy baking! 🙂
Rosemary Focaccia Bread
- 1 1/4 cups boiling water
- 3 Tb chopped fresh rosemary, divided
- 1 Tb honey
- 1 pkg dry yeast (2 1/4 tsp)
- 3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup olive oil, divided
- 1 tsp table salt
- 1 tsp sea salt
Combine boiling water, 1 tsp rosemary, and honey in a large bowl. Let cool to 110 degrees. Sprinkle yeast over water mixture and let stand for about 5 minutes, or until foamy.
Add 3 1/4 cups flour, 2 Tb oil, and 1 tsp salt to yeast mixture. Stir until a soft dough forms.
Turn dough out onto a floured suface. Knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes, adding enough of the remaining flour to keep dough from sticking.
Place in a large, greased bowl, turning to coat all sides of the dough. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled.
Punch dough down. Pat into a 14×12 inch rectangle on a greased baking sheet. Cover and let rise again for about 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Make indentations in dough using a wooden spoon or your fingertips. Drizzle with remaining 2 Tb olive oil, sprinkle with remaining rosemary, and 1 tsp sea salt.
Bake for 25 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from pan and cool on a wire wrack.
This recipe is linked to:
- Recipe Swap Thursday @ Prairie Story