Tortano bread with brown mushrooms and cheese

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Rosemary Focaccia

Focaccia is my favorite bread. With that generous dip into the olive oil is sure an indulgence for me.  Every time we are at an Italian restaurant this is something  I look forward to start off with and lucky some of the restaurant that we are regular at kind of know  this is my weakness and they never fail to give a few slices more 🙂
 
This is one of the easiest bread I have made, yes of course make sure your yeast is active else it can be a complete disaster and be prepared to knead the dough for almost 10 minutes. Ah! I have toned hands!
You need –
  • White bread flour – 500 grams
  • Salt – 1 1/2 teaspoons
  • Instant yeast – 2 1/2 teaspoons
  • Olive oil – 2 tablespoons plus extra for drizzling
  • Lukewarm water – 300 mls
  • Rosemary – 2 tablespoons
  • Fine sea salt
How to –
 
In a large bowl, put the flour, yeast and salt. Mix well. Now stir in the oil, water and knead to form a soft dough.
Turn the dough to a slightly oiled surface and knead for 8-10 minutes. Put the dough back into the same bowl (lightly oiled), cover with a tea towel and let it sit to rise double in size in a warm place. Approximately about an hour.

Pre-heat the oven to 200 C. Line two large baking sheets with grease proof paper. Turn the dough to a flour surface and cut into half. Flatten each portion on the baking sheet. cover and leave to rise again for an hour.

 

Gently press your finger into the dough to make deep holes all over and leave for a further 5-10 minutes. Sprinkle each loaves with rosemary and sea salt. Drizzle some olive oil and  bake for 25 minutes or till pale golden. Remove from the oven and drizzle some more olive oil.


Serve hot or warm.

Note –
  • If you are not sure if your yeast is still active, them prefer you do a proof test. Take half of the lukewarm water ( please make sure the water is not hot. Otherwise your yeast will die). Stir in the yeast along with a pinch of sugar and set aside for 10 minutes. If the form and bubbles foam on top in 10 minutes then your yeast is still active. Add this to the dough with remaining water as per the recipe.
  • The above recipe makes 2 loaves. If you do not want to use both loaves then freeze the other for later. Warm in the microwave before serving.