I was in my dining room with the lights dimmed down low late yesterday evening working on my latest post. The T.V. was blaring loudly in the background with my husband watching the hockey game…or maybe the hockey game was watching him (chuckle)! Anyhow, suddenly “yikes” I pressed the “publish” button instead of the “save” button, hence the unfinished post. I dreaded this happening from when I first started blogging. With the buttons placed close together it’s bound to happen, right?
My apologies dear readers, and on a less dramatic tone, here is a delicious focaccia recipe sure to please friends and family.
This focaccia is light, airy and deliciously flavored with extra virgin olive oil, rosemary and topped with thinly sliced red skinned potatoes. It is a far cry from the dry variety you may find in your local supermarket.
I love my focaccia to be soft and moist on the inside and crunchy on the outside. This recipe is most certainly it. To get the underside crusty, simply grease your pan with olive oil and sprinkle with cornmeal. This adds lots of flavor and crunch.
It is most definitely at it’s best served warm.
- 2 1/2 tsp granulated sugar
- 1 cup warm water
- 1 pkg active dry yeast
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 cups cooled mashed potatoes
- 1 tsp salt
- 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour (approximately)
- 1 tbsp cornmeal
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary (or 2 tsp dried rosemary)
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
- 2 red potatoes, thinly sliced
Place sugar and warm water together in a large bowl and stir to dissolve. Sprinkle in the yeast and let this stand until frothy, for about 10 minutes. Once it is frothy, stir in the 2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil.
In a small bowl, mix the mashed potatoes with the salt. Stir the potato mixture into the yeast mixture. Stir in just enough till you get a slightly sticky dough.
Transfer the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Dust your hands with flour and start kneading the dough while adding in as much of the remaining flour as necessary in order to prevent sticking, for about 8 minutes or until smooth and elastic.
Place the dough in a greased bowl, turning to grease all over. Cover your dough with saran wrap and let it rise in a draft free space until it has doubled in size, about 1 hour.
Grease a 15×10 inch rimmed baking sheet with olive oil and sprinkle evenly with the cornmeal. Punch down the dough and spread it evenly into the prepared pan. Greasing your fingers with some oil helps to spread the dough with minimum fuss. Cover with plastic wrap and let it rise until it is slightly higher than the edge of your pan, for about 45 minutes.
Topping: In a small bowl whisk together the oil, rosemary, garlic, salt and pepper. Gently poke your dough with lightly greased fingertips making indentations all over. Brush half the olive mixture gently over the top of your dough. Place the sliced potatoes on top of the dough, overlapping if you need to. Brush the remaining oil mixture over the potatoes.
Bake in a preheated oven at 375 degrees, in the bottom third of your oven, until the crust is golden brown and the potatoes are nice and tender for about 30 to 40 minutes.
While still warm run a knife around the edges to loosen. Transfer the focaccia to a rack, cool slightly and cut into squares.
Baking on the bottom third oven rack will ensure a crispy crunchy underside.
Adapted from Canadian Living Baking Book
P.S. Please note, I now go by “marisasitaliankitchen.com”