Easy Italian Herb Focaccia

Easy Italian Herb Focaccia

Focaccia

Clipped this one from a magazine (who knows when or from where) and didn’t make too many changes.  Compared it with several MUCH more complicated recipes for focaccia and decided that I would try the easy recipe FIRST . . . it turned out great. I’m sure the recipes requiring sponges and all-day-multiple-rises are super, but for me, I’ll stick with this simple version.

Prep time: 10 minutes
Rise time: 45 minutes – 1-1/4 hours (depending on the temperature of your kitchen)
Bake time: 30-35 minutes
Servings: 8-10 large pieces

Ingredients

  • 3-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp instant or Rapid Rise yeast
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1-2/3 cups very warm water (120° to 130°F)
  • 2 Tbls shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1 Tbls Italian Herb Seasoning (I use Penzeys; or mix up your own combination of dried basil, oregano, marjoram, thyme & rosemary)

Directions

Prepare an 11″x17″ baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper and then brushing some olive oil on the parchment paper. (Yes, you can get by with just oiling a baking sheet, but I find the parchment paper produces a nicer crust.)

Whisk together the flour, undissolved yeast, sugar, and salt in a large bowl.  Add water and 2 tablespoons of the olive oil.  Stir together with a fork until well mixed. The dough will be very sticky.

Using a greased spatula, spread the dough on the prepared baking sheet.  It will NOT fill the whole sheet.  Leave it about 9×12″ and 1/2″ thick (see note below). Cover with oiled plastic wrap.

Let rise until doubled, 30-60 minutes.

Poke multiple “dents” into the dough with the end of the handle of a wooden spoon. Drizzle 2 tablespoons of olive oil over the dough; sprinkle with the parmesan and italian herb seasoning.

Let rise an additional 15 minutes, uncovered, while the oven preheats to 375°F.

Bake 30-35 minutes until lightly browned.  Cool slightly and cut into slices; serve warm with butter or additional olive oil for dipping.

Enjoy!

NOTE: The original instructions used a 9×13″ pan, but when I’ve tried that in the past, I had difficulty getting the bread OUT of the pan later.  Leaving it more free-form on a baking sheet works better for me.

© 2010, Lucinda DeWitt


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