Friday, 9 March 2012

For foccacia's sake!

I can't believe how quickly this week's gone - meant to post more this week too!
The week started with sourdough pancakes for Sunday breakfast, (my first attempt and my advice is to make sure you've got lots of sourdough as batter before starting!) followed by foccacia for lunch (served with OH's  lovely homemade lasagne). Very straightforward - recipe owed entirely to Daniel Stevens' fantastic Bread book.

This makes one large foccacia.
500g strong white bread flour
5g dried yeast (Instant or Easy Bake)
10g salt
325ml warm water
1tbsp olive oil

To finish
A good glug of rosemary oil/olive oil
Sprinkle of flaky sea salt
Two rosemary sprigs, stripped and finely chopped

Grab the biggest bowl you've got and combine the flour, yeast, salt, water and oil, turn out onto a clean work surface and knead for 10 minutes. Shape into a round, (I'll go into this in another post - sorry!), coat with a dash more olive oil and pop it back into the bowl, covered with a clean/new bin bag. No need to worry about radiators - the bag will do the job. Just make sure it's folded underneath the bowl. Leave for at least one hour, maybe as much as an hour and a half. No peaking!

Oven on now. As high as she can go!

Okay, it should have doubled in size by now. Tip it onto an oiled shallow baking tray and shape the dough to fir the tray (ie carefully press/stretch the dough to form a rectangle on the tray, right into the corners). Loosely cover with the bin bag and leave for half an hour.

After this time, you can get medieval on the dough. Fingertips in, making deep holes all over. Don't rip it and try not to get too near the bottom of the dough, but it should be puffed up so I reckon it can take it! Drizzle some olive oil, or rosemary oil over it, bit of salt and the rosemary sprigs. Get that into the oven at full temp for 10 minutes and whack on that Dean Martin CD.

When you can smell the rosemary and you can't imagine any life different than being serenaded by Dean Martin whilst eating this incredible bread, (ie after 10 minutes) then snap out of it and turn the oven down to about 200C/Gas Mark 6 and give it three more songs, or 7-10 minutes to non Dean Martin fans! Keep an eye on it. Mine was in just a tad too long (see crispy edge!)


Enjoy, but let it cool for a few minutes if you can bear it! Great as a sandwich the following day!

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