Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Easy Focaccia

Well I'm still having fun playing with my new "toy"...my food processor, that is! I thought I'd make pizza dough next but I saw they had this recipe for easy focaccia in the recipe booklet that came with the processor so I gave it a try. Easy?? Wow, that's an understatement!! It took more of my time to clean the processor bowl afterward than to make this!! Sure I had to let it double in bulk twice, but all I had to do for that was wait!
And look how pretty! The dough comes out light and airy and depending what you sprinkle on top it has great flavor.
I used some sun dried tomatoes I had in the fridge with chopped fresh rosemary and some dried Italian herbs. I also sprinkled some kosher salt on top for a little crunch and extra flavor.
The sun dried tomatoes did get a little darkened in the high heat of the oven but we can always pick them off later!

Look at that dough before baking..bella..no?? Such pretty colors !!

Easy Focaccia
1/3 cup warm water ( 105-115F)
1 envelope active dry yeast (2 1/4 tsp.)
1 tsp. sugar
4 cups unbleached AP flour
7 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, divided
2 tsp. salt
1 cup cold water
1 tsp. kosher or coarse sea salt
chopped fresh or dried herbs, sundried tomatoes, olives, etc. (optional).
Combine 1/3 cup warm water with yeast and a tsp. of sugar in a 2 cup measure with pouring spout. Stir to dissolve yeast. Let it rest 3-10 minutes til foamy.( If it doesn't foam, the yeast is not active. Discard and begin again with fresh yeast).
Using the dough blade, place flour with 3 tbsp. olive oil and 2 tsp. salt into the work bowl of processor. Process to blend 10 seconds.
Add cold water to yeast mixture, stir to blend.
With machine running, add the liquid through the small feed tube in a slow steady stream, as fast as the flour will absorb it.
When liquid is absorbed and mixture has formed a ball of dough that has cleaned the sides of the bowl, process for 45 seconds longer to knead.
Coat dough with 1/2 tbsp. olive oil.
Place in a resealable zip lock bag, squeezing out the air and seal, allowing space for dough to rise.
Allow dough to rise 1 hour in a warm, draft free spot.
Spread 1 tbsp. of remaining oil in a jelly roll pan(15 x 10") . Punch dough down and let it rest 5 mins.
Press dough into pan until it fills it totally.Cover with sheet of oiled plastic wrap and let it rise again 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 450F .
Make dimples in the surface of the dough with your fingers. Drizzle with remaining oil and smear with your fingers. Sprinkle with coarse salt and herbs.
Bake about 20 minutes or til deep golden.

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