2/7/14

Focaccia

Focaccia can be made with a variety of added herbs and different ingredients, but this recipe is just a plain, simple version of an Italian cornbread. Focaccia is great served hot with soups, and it is a versatile bread that can also be split for sandwiches or the dough can be rolled out thin for a super pizza crust.

The inspiration for this recipe came from Alton Brown's I'm Just Here for More Food. I have adapted the recipe and instructions to reflect my own cooking style.






Focaccia

3 1/3 cups water, divided
1/2 cup cornmeal
4 tablespoons olive oil + additional for greasing bowl and drizzling
6 1/2 cups bread flour
1 package yeast
4 teaspoons salt
Kosher salt for sprinkling

In a small saucepan, whisk 1 cup water and cornmeal together, whisking constantly while cooking over medium-high heat about one minute or until mixture thickens. Add remaining water and olive oil to the mixture, stir to combine and heat until the mixture reaches a temperature of 110 - 115 degrees F.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the cornmeal mixture, half the flour, and the yeast. Mix together with a dough hook until combined, then let the dough rest for 10 minutes.

Gradually add the remaining flour and the salt to the dough and mix at low speed until dough comes away from the sides of the bowl. Knead the dough in the mixer with the dough hook for 5 - 7 minutes.

Place the dough on a floured surface and fold over several times, then place in a large oiled bowl. Cover and set aside to rise for 1 hour.

Spread the dough out flat on an oiled sheet pan, cover and set aside to rise for 1 1/2 hours.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Ten minutes prior to baking, use fingertips to press shallow depressions, or dimples, in the dough being careful not to make holes. Generously drizzle with olive oil, then sprinkle with kosher salt. Bake for 20 - 25 minutes, or until golden brown. Cut into serving-size squares, serve warm.




This Focaccia was the perfect accompaniment for steaming bowls of Tuscan Verde Soup when friends visited.

3 comments:

  1. I bet your friends enjoyed this! Looks wonderful.

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  2. Focaccia is on my list of things I want to make soon Anita! I love that yours calls for cornmeal, never heard of that before, sounds really good:@)

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  3. I've never made this but now maybe I will. Are you coming out with a cookbook? I see the Sugar, Spice and Spilled Milk copyright....hmmmm?

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