Recipe
Focaccia, Anyone?

Focaccia, Anyone?

This focaccia is delicious on its own, makes a great bread for sandwiches, and is also perfect for cutting into thin slices and toasting briefly before serving with your favorite dip.

  • Yield: 1 large "loaf" of focaccia, about 12 inches by 17 inches

Ingredients

  • 3 (1/4-ounce) packets active dry yeast
  • 7 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 2 cups warm water (110º F on an instant-read thermometer)
  • 6 cups white bread flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

Directions

  • Lightly oil a baking sheet with 2 teaspoons of the olive oil.
  • In the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine the water, sugar, and yeast with 4 tablespoons of the remaining olive oil. Stir and let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the flour and regular salt and mix on low speed until the dough comes together and forms a ball, about 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Increase speed to medium and mix for 7 to 8 minutes. If the dough is a little sticky, continue mixing and, with the mixer on low speed, add a bit more bread flour to form a smooth, elastic dough.
  • Coat a large mixing bowl with 1 teaspoon of the remaining olive oil. Transfer dough to the bowl and turn to coat evenly with the oil. Cover the bowl with a damp clean kitchen towel or plastic wrap and put in a warm, draft-free area to rise until dough has doubled in size, about 1 1/2 hours.
  • Position rack in center of oven and preheat the oven to 450º F.
  • When the bread dough has doubled, punch the dough down with your fist and transfer to the greased baking sheet. Using your fingers, press the dough evenly to about 1/2-inch thickness.
  • Cover with plastic wrap, put in a warm, dry area, and let rise until doubled in size, about 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  • Remove the plastic wrap and, using your fingertips, press to form dimples in the dough at about 3-inch intervals. Sprinkle with the kosher salt and drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
  • Bake until golden, about 25 to 30 minutes. (You may need to turn the baking sheet once during the cooking time to ensure even browning.)
  • Using oven mitts or pot holders, remove the baking sheet from the oven and transfer to a wire rack. Sprinkle the focaccia with the chopped basil and set aside to cool.