Friday, March 2, 2012

Rosemary and Blue Cheese Focaccia

After getting into a discussion about bread one day with my neighbor ( something about how much we love it :)) she gave me this recipe for focaccia bread. I have to admit it intimidated me a little but she assured me that this recipe was super simple. Since Jason was out of town last night I went to spend the evening with my parents and cook them dinner. I made the focaccia for all of us to munch on before dinner with a bottle glass of wine. It was a huge hit and my parents have already insisted that I make it again soon.

Instead of using Parmesan cheese like the recipe called for I added blue cheese before letting it bake in the oven. Tuscan Herb olive oil was served on the side for dipping. You can easily substitute other herbs or cheeses into this recipe if you prefer.

Rosemary and Blue Cheese Focaccia
(Recipe makes 2 breads)
- 3 cups all-purpose flour or bread flour (Do not use self-rising)
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary leaves
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 package regular or quick active dry yeast
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup very warm water
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 container of blue cheese crumbles

- 1. Mix 1 cup of the flour, rosemary, sugar, salt, and yeast in a large bowl. Add 3 tablespoons oil and the warm water. Beat with an electric mixer for about 3 minutes. Stir in enough remaining flour until dough is soft and leaves the sides of the bowl.
- 2. Place dough on a lightly floured surface. Knead 5 to 8 minutes or until dough is smooth and springy.

Place dough in large greased bowl, turning the dough to grease all sides. Cover bowl loosely with plastic wrap  and let it rise about 30 minutes or until almost double. Dough is ready if indention remains when touched.
- 3. Grease two cookie sheets or 12-inch pizza pans with small amount of oil.
- 4. Gently push fist into dough to deflate. Divide dough in half. Shape each half into a flattened 10-inch round on cookie sheet. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let it rise about 30 more minutes or until double.

- 5. Heat oven to 400 degrees. Gently make depressions about 2 inches apart in dough with fingers. Carefully brush with two tablespoons oil; Sprinkle with the crumbled blue cheese. Bake 15 to 20 minutes. Serve warm or cool.

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