My version of focaccia

I read a blog yesterday where the writer had made the most beautiful focaccia… Did I ever mention how much I love good bread products?  Or how I find baking my own bread, kneading it, the aroma, one of my greatest cooking pleasures?  Or how my dad actually taught me to bake bread (between his leaving us and coming back multiple times)?  That’s one of the only pleasant memories I have of him, but hey, at least I can dig one up, right?   So anyhow, after reading that lovely blog, I decided I wanted to make my own focaccia today.  I’m going to use it as the base of some mighty tasty veggie sandwiches for work this week.

One of the things I’ve discovered about bread making is that you don’t really need a recipe.  Provided you don’t kill the yeast but do get the liquid used to the correct temp (warm to the touch), your bread will turn out fine.  So…today’s focaccia consists of whole wheat flour, a little white flour (I’ve never tried whole wheat bread flour, but have heard wonderful things about it, let me know if you’ve incorporated this in to your bread recipes), a small amount of sugar, oil, yeast, and warm water.  I also added some dried basil…the blog I referred to earlier showed the basil cut into strips and placed over the top of the focaccia before baking…I told you it was beautiful.  Mine isn’t as aesthetically pleasing, but oh my, did it ever taste good.  I mixed everything together, then kneaded it for a while.  Once it was the right consistency, I put it on a pizza stone and spread it flat to cover the stone.  I then covered it with a towel and let it rise for 45 minutes or so (I told you this isn’t exact, didn’t believe me?).

Once it had risen, I uncovered it and poked holes in it using my finger.  I then spread a little canola oil (olive oil would have been good too) over it, sprinkled more dried basil and grated Parmesan cheese (the real deal, not the stuff in the green can) over the entire focaccia. 

 Then baked it at 350 degrees for 10 or 15 minutes.  I didn’t want to overbake it, and the time was closer to 10 minutes than 15.  Took it out of the oven and placed the baking stone on a wire cooling rack…this is totally unscientific, but I think things continue to bake when you leave them on the baking stone, even out of the oven.  Anyhow, this turned out nice…soft, fluffy, not too dense, great taste.

How’s that for a quick bread that is oh so much better than what you can buy at the grocery store?

 I do have one little question…I’ve seen it spelled both foccacia and focaccia…is one right and one wrong, or are both acceptable? (Spell check here at word press doesn’t even recognize the word…hmm…)

12 Responses

  1. My favorite bread! Sometimes if I don’t make it down the hill early enough, the store is sold out by the time I get there! Thanks for sharing your recipe we’re just going to have to try it.

  2. I hope you don’t mind I added the link for your recipe to our group on facebook ‘what’s cooking’!/groups/108291692533285/?ap=1 to share it with others

  3. I’m always lurking around the “day-old” bread display and love finding a loaf of focaccia, which is hardly ever. If I can’t eat it all soon enough I’ll turn it into croutons and then bread crumbs so not a crumble goes to waste.
    I haven’t baked enough bread to believe you when you say “you don’t really need a recipe.” My 8th grade Home Ec teacher, Mrs. Higgs, bless her soul, was so obsessive about measurements she scared me out of the kitchen for years. (Level cups had to be leveled with a spatula, not a knife because a knife has a curve in the blade and the measurement wouldn’t be exact.) But I found a never-been-used bread machine for $5 at the Salvation Army recently so I’m beginning to get the feel for it.
    I will try this.

    • Cool on the bread machine…I’d probably be making bread several times a week if I had one of those. Aww…poor old Mrs. Higgs, what about all of those grandmothers who never used a recipe for anything? Just a pinch of this and a handful of that…I don’t go that far…but once you get used to making bread, you can tell by the texture of the dough whether or not you need to add anything else.

  4. It sure does look good, Patti. My mom always had freshly-made bread in the house, but I don’t bake it often. I do love the aroma–it’s probably worth making it for that alone. I’m sure yours smelled wonderful with the herbs on it. I never thought about baking it on the pizza stone.

    • I learned that pizza stone trick from my pizza business days, the oven was a stone oven and cooked the crusts to perfection. Ahh…those were the days…when I ate pizza every day…ha!

  5. What an insight review and info on bread maker, I love your post.

  6. […] My version of focaccia ( […]

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