Rosemary Focaccia| Christy Rost
- 1 envelope active dry yeast (1 scant tablespoon)
- 1 ¾ cups warm water
- ¼ teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 ¾ -4 cups bread flour
- ¼ cup olive oil to brush over bread
- 2 teaspoons sea salt, for garnish
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary, for garnish
In a large bowl, sprinkle yeast and sugar over warm water, stir, and set it aside in a warm place 10 to 15 minutes until it begins to foam. With a large wooden spoon, stir in salt, 2 tablespoons olive oil, and 2 cups of the flour. Mix well.
Add enough of the remaining flour to form a soft dough. Turn the dough out onto a floured counter and knead until it is smooth and springs back when pressed lightly with a fingertip. Shape the dough into a ball and place it in an oiled bowl. Spray the top of the dough with nonstick spray, cover with plastic wrap and then a towel. Set it aside in a warm place to rise, approximately 40 minutes. After the dough has doubled, punch it down with your fist, turn in the edges of the dough, and transfer it to a lightly floured counter. Knead several times until the dough is smooth.
Divide the dough in half and use a rolling pin to roll each half into a large sphere. Transfer to cookie sheets lined with parchment paper, spray with nonstick spray, and cover with plastic wrap and a towel. Set aside in a warm place to rise, about 20 to 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Dimple the risen dough at 1-inch intervals with a fingertip, brush them with remaining oil, and sprinkle with sea salt and chopped rosemary. Bake 12 to 15 minutes, or until breads are golden brown. To serve, slice focaccia and dip in plates of olive oil seasoned with sea salt, black pepper, and dots of balsamic vinegar.
Yield: 2 large loaves