FINALLY! This is the first yeast bread recipe I'm posting! Been putting it off for a while now... Bread is one of those things I keep putting off making, because its a long drawn out process.. But when I finally do get around to baking, there hasn't been once that I haven't felt that it's all been worth it!!
There's something about bread, maybe its that warm delicious smell that fills the house while it bakes, or watching leavened dough cook to a deep golden color, or that first warm, crusty bite, or maybe it's all those things put together. Whatever it is, bread cheers me up like few other things do!!
Oh, and this one's for my friend Vasi, who is always looking for egg free recipes!! Hopefully this will be the first of many!!
So lets get baking!!
You will need - all purpose flour, Durham-semolina (or just substitute with A.P. flour), water, extra virgin olive oil, salt, dry yeast, Sun-dried tomatoes and thyme.
I ALWAYS mix the yeast with some warm water and a little sugar/honey. I know, most of the time dry yeast is reliable, but trust me, there are few things as irritating as having a rock solid ball of dough after having used yeast that you thought was alive... So mix the yeast with warm water and sugar, let it sit for a few minutes. Once you have a nice froth on top, you know you're good to go!
Mix all the ingredients (Except the sun-dried tomatoes and thyme) and knead until you have a smooth, silky dough. Elbow grease people! I know that a stand mixture will do the trick, but honestly, I find that I appreciate my bread SO much more when I've had to put a lot of effort in!
Divide the dough into four, and roll out into a circle/square/rectangle, whatever. Yes, you can make a map of the world if you want. Take a piece of parchment paper and oil it. Lay the rolled out dough on the oiled side. Cover with a damp kitchen towel and let it prove for about 2-3 hours.
By which time, it should look like this- all pillowy and nicely risen.
Now soak the sun dried tomatoes in hot water for a few minutes. Then chop them up.
Dimple the dough, press in the tomatoes, and sprinkle the thyme-be generous.. Leave it to prove for another hour.
Then bake at 450 degrees F for about 20 minutes, or until golden on top.
Serve warm. It tastes brilliant just by itself, but you could serve it with a dip. I've used everything from pesto to a roasted eggplant dip and this focaccia is excellent!
All purpose flour - 450 g
Durham semolina - 190 g
Water - 440 g (yes, grams not ml)
Extra virgin olive oil - 80 g
Salt - 12 g
Dry yeast - 3 g
Sun-dried tomatoes - 2 tbspns
Thyme - 1 tbspn
Combine all the ingredients except the tomatoes and thyme
Knead until the resulting dough is smooth and silky.
Oil a cookie sheet, place parchment paper on it, oil that as well.
Divide the dough into 4 pieces.
Roll out the dough into disks or squares.
Proof for 2-3 hours, at 75 degrees F.
Soak the tomatoes in hot water for 5 minutes, then drain and chop.
Dimple the focaccia, them top with the tomatoes.
Sprinkle the focaccia with thyme and let it sit for another hour.
Bake at 450 degrees F for about 20 minutes or until a golden crust has formed.