Saturday, May 9, 2009

Focaccia with Dried Tomatoes, Olives, and Rosemary

Serves 12

1 1/2 Cups Water, warm (about 110 degrees)
1/4 Ounce Dry Yeast, 1 enveloope
1 Teaspoon Sugar
3 3/4 Cups Bread Flour
6 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 1/2 Tablespoons Salt
1/2 Cup Black Olives, coarsely chopped
1/4 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
1/4 Cup Romano Cheese, freshly grated

  1. In a large bowl, combine ½ cup of the warm water, yeast and sugar. Stir to dissolve. Let stand for five minutes, or until foamy. Add the remaining one cup water, the flour, 2 tablespoons of the oil and the salt. Stir to combine.
  2. Turn the dough into a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic (dough will be soft), about seven minutes. Shape the dough into a ball. Lightly oil the inside of a large bowl. Add the dough and turn it to coat evenly with the oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a clean towel and let it stand in a warm, draft-free place until it doubles, about 1 hour.
  3. Lightly oil a 15½-by-10½-inch jelly-roll pan. Punch the dough down and pat into the prepared pan. Cover and let rise in a warm place until it doubles, about 45 minutes. Blanch rosemary needles for 20 seconds then sprinkle them on the dough. With your greased fingertips, make deep indentations, about 1 inch apart, over the entire surface of the dough, almost to the bottom of the pan. Drizzle with 3 tablespoons of the remaining olive oil and sprinkle with the kosher salt. Cover loosely and let rise in a warm place until it doubles in size, about 45 minutes.
  4. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Spoon the olives and dried tomatoes evenly over the dough. Bake on the bottom rack until the bottom is crusty and the top is lightly browned, about 18 minutes. Sprinkle with the Romano cheese. Slide the focaccia from the pan unto a wire rack to cool before cutting to serve.

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