Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Easy Homemade Focaccia

Foccacia by Rooted Vegan

Foccacia is an oven baked Italian flat bread that has a bajillion different incarnations. This bread can be savory or sweet. You can dip it in oil as a nice appetizer or slice it in half for a sandwich. You are really only limited by your imagination. This is just a little intro into this amazing and versatile flat bread.

2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
1 1/4 c warm water
2 T vegan sugar
1 1/4 tsp. salt
2 T olive plus more for brushing
1/4 tsp garlic powder
3 c flour

1. In a large mixing bowl combine your yeast, sugar and water. Let proof for about 10 minutes (this is just between us, I never wait that long).
2. Add the salt, olive oil, garlic powder and then add the flour one cup at a time, mixing with your hands (don't forget to take your rings off).
3. Once you have a nice elastic-y dough ball, put it in your bowl and drizzle with a little olive oil. Cover with a clean towel and set in a nice warm spot to rise for about 40 minutes. Punch it it just me or doesn't this just seem rude? All of that progress followed by a beat down. C'est la vie. Anyway, reform your ball and let it rise for another half an hour or so.

Now, your dough is ready! You have so many options. Today I am showing you how to make foccacia, but this dough works great for pizza and stromboli and about a zillion other things so just keep it in mind.

4. I like to divide my dough into halves so I can make a couple of smaller rounds of foccacia. So, it is really up to you--- halves or keep it simple with one big piece. Shape it into a rounds that are about 1 1/2 inches-2 inches thick.
5. Use your fingers to dimple the surface.
6. Lay onto a lightly oiled baking sheet and brush with a bit more oil.
7. Add some toppings. I used kalamata olives and rosemary on one and sun dried tomatoes (oil packed and drained) with a bit of sea salt on the other. Here are a few ideas:
  • sea salt, small seeds (sesame, poppy, sunflower, etc.)
  • Daiya shredded cheese, sun dried tomatoes
  • fresh tomatoes, basil
  • rosemary 
  • mixed fresh herbs
  • olives
  • marinated and drained artichoke hearts
  • sun dried tomatoes 
8. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until golden, at 375 F.
    Foccacia by Rooted Vegan

Now if you want to have your mind blown with the versatility of this dough try making it sweet. JUST BE SURE TO OMIT THE GARLIC POWDER. Top the dough with a drizzle of agave or a sprinkle of vegan sugar then you can add some sweet toppings like: raisins, figs, grapes, etc.

~Maria Rose