Monday, February 27, 2012

Focaccia with Rosemary

Cold and rainy winter days always inspire me to bake. Sometimes cookies or cakes and other times bread. Today is a bread day so I'll share my recipe for whole-wheat rosemary focaccia. Focaccia is an Italian flat bread. This particular recipe, which I adapted from an Italian cookbook, is one of my families favorite breads. I use a combination of whole wheat and regular bread flour, brush it with extra-virgin olive oil and top it with coarse sea salt and fresh rosemary from my garden.

1 pkg yeast
1 cup lukewarm water
pinch of sugar
1 tsp salt
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 cups bread flour
3 tbsp olive oil
fresh rosemary
coarse sea salt

* in a medium bowl, mix yeast, water and sugar... allow to sit about 5 minutes until yeast has dissolved and starts to foam
* use wooden spoon to mix in the whole wheat flour... gradually mix in the bread flour, stirring until the dough begins to pull away from the sides of the bowl (you may not need the entire 2 cups)
* knead dough for about 10 minutes on a lightly floured surface
* place dough in a lightly oiled mixing bowl, cover with a cloth and let rise in a warm place 30-45 minutes, until dough has doubled in size
* punch dough down and knead for 2 minutes
* brush a shallow baking pan with olive oil, place the dough in pan and use fingers to press it into an even layer (it's ok if the dough doesn't go all the way to the sides of the pan, mine rarely does)
* scatter with rosemary leaves, cover with a cloth and leave to rise about 30 minutes...preheat the oven to 400 during this time
* just before baking use your fingers to make rows of small indentions in the surface... brush with olive oil... sprinkle lightly with coarse salt and bake for about 25 minutes.
* cut into squares before serving... serve right from the oven or at room temperature

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