I am so into bread making. There was a period a while back that I would make bread all the time. I have gotten away from bread making and I don’t know why. I want to get back into it in a big way. I recently made a rye bread. There is nothing better than the smell of fresh bread in and just out of the oven.
The challenge of bread making is that it can be so temperamental. I cannot say that I have bread making down. It takes a lot of practice. I totally have the FEEL down on the tackiness the bread should have after it proofs and is mixed. Depending on the type of bread you are making that tackiness will vary. However, the more you try to make bread, the more you will have a sense of the place between being wet or being dry that this focaccia should be. Focaccia bread is generally a little more moist, a little more tacky than other breads.
I love focaccia bread. This is a bread that I, you NEED to make more often. It is such a great compliment to an Italian dinner. It is reasonably light so it does not overwhelm the meal. I made this bread to go with a pasta dinner that I made for a very good friend of ours. We actually were hosting a retirement party. Our friend and we are way too young to be retired. The group decided that I would cook a dinner for this occasion. I asked our friend what her favorite meal was. She said that her favorite meal her mom would make (and her mom is no longer on this earth) is spaghetti and meatballs. So that was what I needed to make. I also had to add in some ideas that would be all mine but support her desires. This bread was a subtle way to do something I enjoy but keep the dinner what our friend wanted.
- 2 1/4 teaspoons active yeast
- 1 cup water
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 2 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon dried rosemary
- In a stand mixer, stir together the yeast, water and honey.
- Let bloom for about 10 minutes until the mixture begins to bubble.
- Next, stir in the all-purpose flour, olive oil and kosher salt. Mix Well
- Dust a kitchen surface with a light coating of flour and knead the dough mixture for 5 – 10 minutes – the dough will be a little tacky.
- Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with a kitchen towel; move to a dark, warm place and let rest for at least an hour. The dough should more than double in size.
- Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees.
- Remove the dough from the bowl and press it into a 9″ x 13″ baking pan sprayed with no stick spray.
- The final step of this process is to take your fingers and punch holes throughout the dough.
- Drizzle with the olive oil and the rosemary.
- Let rest another 30 – 40 minutes (or until your desired thickness)
- Bake until golden brown – about 12 minutes.
- Remove to a cooling rack and eat when ready.
- Serve and enjoy!
The cast of characters.
The yeast blooming, the flour and oil added and the dough ball formed.
The dough spread out on a baking tray and punched down before the final rise.
The Focaccia Bread after baking.