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  • goodmanlauren

Focaccia

Updated: Jan 21

For my first challenge I wanted to start with something completely outside of my comfort zone which is bread. When I was looking at what type of bread had the highest likelihood of not causing me to curse and dramatically throw everything in the bin, I came across focaccia.  In this particular recipe focaccia is described as one of the most forgiving and foolproof bread bakes. I hope they are right.

 

Bread and I have a complicated relationship. I know many people who have become accomplished bread bakers over the last few years. I however, am not one of them. 

 

Almost every time I have attempted bread in the past it has fallen flat, sometimes literally.  It either doesn’t rise, over proofs, is gummy or stodgy or any other descriptive word that equates to me getting frustrated and cursing off bread for life (just the making of it, never the eating).

 

Unlike so many other bakes there is a component to bread making that is all about feel.  How much flour you add depends on the wetness of the dough and how humid it is. How long you let it rise depends on the temperature in the room. How long you knead it for depends on the gluten formation in the dough. I guess I just never had a feel for it.

 

Focaccia is flat bread with a moist and airy middle between crunchy crusts. It has a dimpled appearance that is the result of pressing your fingers in the dough to make small valleys which are convenient for holding oil or balsamic vinegar. Often used as a vehicle for all kinds of vegetables baked on top, it is often a preferred choice for sandwiches or just served with generous amounts of olive oil. There is some debate about where focaccia originated but most believe it was from North Central Italy but many similar breads can be found in France, Spain, Greece and Turkey as well.

 

I attempted this recipe from Preppy Kitchen.  Drumroll – it turned out amazingly! 

 

This recipe is an easy no knead recipe that you can let rise in your fridge which makes it considerably less high maintenance than some other breads. It was so satisfying to dimple the dough with my fingertips. I opted for rosemary and sea salt to top it off and obviously a big dollop of butter. I would highly recommend this recipe for anyone who is looking for a no fuss bread or for someone like me, who is a little bread shy and wants to start off with a friendly and forgiving option.

 


Lessons learned:

  • Don’t be so scared of bread.

 

What I will attempt next time:

  • Trying other toppings.  I will be more adventurous with the toppings like roasted garlic, onion, olives and sun-dried tomatoes

  • Freezing it.  According to the recipe, you can wrap it with plastic wrap (or likely wax wrap), put it in a resealable bag and freeze it for up to two months

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