01 July 2009

Bread Fabulosity

Easy, quick, cheap, and delicious. There are no excuses: you must make this bread. Or get someone to make it for you.

1 1/2 cups warm water
5 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
3 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour (I used some whole wheat as well)
1 tablespoon instant "rapid rise" yeast
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano

1) Grease a 9x13 pan with cooking spray, and drizzle 2 tablespoons olive oil in the bottom. I like glass pans for this.

2) Combine remaining ingredients in mixing bowl, and beat at high speed with an electric mixer for 60 seconds. I used the Bosch; a Kitchen-Aid would be great.

3) Scoop the sticky batter into the prepared pan, and use your fingers to push it into the corners. You may want to oil your fingers so the dough doesn't stick.

4) Cover the pan with a towel,and let it rise at room temperature for 60 minutes, till it’s become puffy. And oh baby, it WILL be puffy. The dough triples in size (at least).

5) While the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

6) Gently poke the dough all over with your index finger and add toppings of your choice: definitely a drizzle of olive oil, plus pizza seasoning, and maybe some cracked pepper.

7) Bake the bread till it’s golden brown, 30 to 40 minutes.

8) Remove it from the oven, wait 5 minutes, then turn focaccia out of the pan onto a rack. Serve warm or at room temperature. (Note: we all liked this better after it had cooled. So make it ahead and serve with spaghetti, ravioli, gnocchi, minestrone, roast beef, grilled chicken, or what-have-you.)

p.s. I don't think "fabulosity" is a word, but I liked its sound better than "fabulousness."

HT: King Arthur Flour. I only made a few very minor adjustments. For a blog post on this recipe with step by step pictures and instructions, check here.

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