Monday, June 2, 2008

Herbed Focaccia Bread

A few weeks ago, Sam invited us over for a BBQ, and suggested I bring homemade bread. Now, for something like a BBQ, I figured a "finger food" would be best, and when it comes to bread-themed finger foods, slices of focaccia seemed to fit the bill.

The focaccia recipe is a variation on my pizza recipe (both adapted from the Bread Bible). The pizza recipe is HERE. For making the focaccia, I typically start the dough with about 2+ cups of water and add the other ingredients to match with this. Then, after I've had the dough rise in a bowl for 90-minutes, I shape it into (relatively thick) rounds or into a large rectangle (on a lightly greased jelly roll or similar shallow baking pan sprinkled with corn meal).

I then cover it again to let rise about 40 more minutes. Then, using my fingers, I poke indentations throughout the dough and spread an oil and herb mixture on using a spoon. The bread then bakes for 20-25 minutes at 400 (for small rounds or up to 40 minutes for a larger rectangle). As soon as it is done, I sprinkle it with kosher salt.

For the oil, which is the real flavor of the bread, I mix a third of a cup (or so) of olive oil and add in freshly chopped garlic (2 cloves) and rosemary (2 sprigs), but you can easily adapt this to suit your tastes (I've sometimes used basil, thinly sliced red onions, etc.). I typically prepare the oil when the dough is rising the first time so that the oil will be saturated with flavor. The finished produce looks something like this:

Sliced into smallish pieces, this makes great finger food, and it is full of flavor. It is one of my favorite things to bring to pot luck dinners or when having guests over for appetizers/wine.

1 comment:

Sam said...

Ok, I admit, I'm behind in the blog world lately. Thanks again for making this for the bbq. It was delicious! I think if the whole professor and grad school thing doesn't work out, we can start a bakery :)