Saturday, January 3, 2015

Focaccia

These are both from the same basic recipe. The only difference is the toppings.



Asiago/garlic focaccia





Parmesan/rosemary focaccia

The recipe:

2 1/4 teaspoons rapid-rising dry yeast (1 packet)
1/2 teaspoon diastatic malt
1 1/2 cup warm water
2 tablespoons sugar or 4 tablespoons honey
3 1/2 to 4 cups flour
1 tablespoon salt
1/4 cup olive oil

This is made with stand mixer.

Place the warm water, the yeast, and the sugar or honey in the mixer bowl. Blend it and let it set for three or four minutes. It will foam a bit. When that happens, it's time to start adding flour, a cup at a time.

When the flour is added and the kneading is underway, then dissolve the salt in a few tablespoons - two or three - and add that.

After that, add the olive oil.

Continue to knead on low. If the dough is too 'tough' add a bit more water, a tablespoon at a time. The dough should be smooth and elastic, but sticky, and it should not be 'heavy.'

You may have to stop the mixer and pull the dough off the hook from time-to-time. 

Dump the doughball onto a lightly floured surface, and fold it over itself several times, pushing it down. Kind of a knead, but not really.

Form it into a ball, and put it into a large bowl that has been well-oiled with olive oil. Turn the doughball until it is coated; this will keep it from drying out.

Cover the bowl with a damp towel and let the dough rise in a warm place for about an hour. It should double in size.

Place parchment paper on a baking tin, lightly flour it - cornmeal is also acceptable for this - and turn the dough out onto this. Shape the dough into a rectangular loaf about an inch thick. Brush with olive oil and sprinkle toppings of choice - cheeses, olives, rosemary, Italian herbs, etc. Let it rise for another half hour, then bake at 425 degrees for 20 -25 minutes. Watch it carefully or you can overdo it at the end.