I've detailed my love affair with the KitchenAid mixer so much that you're probably a little tired of it and perhaps think I'm a wee bit crazy. Well, I won't argue with you there, but I will say that since I've been home that baby has been working hard mixing, beating,stirring and kneading on a daily basis. I've been on a yeast bread kick, and my first recipe is a quickie focaccia. A lot of things in life are worth a little patience and waiting, but if you can have an equally satisfying quickie, why complain? Mind out of the gutters, please.
Focaccia has always been one of my favorite breads. Full of flavor and having just the perfect balance of crisp crust and soft interior, I eat way too much of this stuff when tempted. This Rosemary Focaccia will only take about 2.5 hours of your life: one to allow it to rise, about a half hour to bake, and another hour just to devour the entire pan.
How simple could bread baking really be? Olive oil is drizzled on the bottom of the baking pan to give the focaccia a crisp and flavorful crust. The dough is poured in, sprinkled with rosemary & garlic salt, and left alone to rise for an hour. After a brief stint in the oven, your house will smelly dreamy and you'll be happy.
The following day, we used our ungodly delicious focaccia to make grilled paninis with turkey, red pepper, tomato and goat cheese. I couldn't have been any more jubilant once I realized we had both eaten approximately 1.5 cups of flour per person in a 24 hour time period. Eat me, Dr. Atkins.
Quickie Rosemary Focaccia
Adapted from King Arthur Flour
1 1/2 cups (12 ounces) warm water
3 tablespoons (1 1/4 ounces) olive oil (plus additional for drizzling)
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
3 1/2 cups (14 ¾ ounces) All-Purpose Flour
1 tablespoon instant yeast (I used 4 teaspoons of active dry yeast, proofed for 10 minutes in 1/2 cup of water)
2 tablespoons fresh Rosemary, chopped
1/2 teaspoon coarse garlic salt
1) Lightly grease a 9" x 13" pan, and drizzle 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil in the bottom.
2) Combine all of the ingredients, and beat at high speed with an electric mixer for 60 seconds.
3) Scoop the sticky batter into the prepared pan, cover the pan, and let it rise at room temperature for 60 minutes, till it’s become puffy.
4) While the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 375°F.
5) Gently poke the dough all over with your index finger.
6) Drizzle it lightly with olive oil, and sprinkle with Rosemary and garlic salt.
7) Bake the bread till it’s golden brown, 35 to 40 minutes.
8) Remove it from the oven, wait 5 minutes, then turn it out of the pan onto a rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.