Often, when people ask me for my favorite recipes, I look through the GFE archives and send it to them that way. I've written about so many of my go-tos here: a delicious breakfast date shake, the best feta sauce that could impress anyone, these sumptuous roasted potatoes and this miso dressing - things I make over and over again. So, when someone recently asked me to send them the focaccia recipe I use all the the time and I realized it was not on the GFE website, I knew I had to write about it this month.
This recipe is easy. SO SO EASY. Do not be intimidated because it has yeast in it and it involves a rise. If you can make chocolate chip cookies you will excel at this. If you can mix flour and water with a spoon you will excel at this. This recipe manages to be super impressive, really really delicious and very little work. This last weekend I topped it with kalamata olives - it is also very adaptable!
From the Wednesday Chef
6 1/4 cups flour
2 Tbsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. yeast
3 1/2 cups warm water
1/4 cup olive oil plus more for drizzling and pan greasing
optional toppings: olives, chopped rosemary
Whisk together flour, salt and yeast in a large bowl. Add water and mix well with a spatula until the flour is completely incorporated. Get another large bowl (I use the bowl from my KitchenAid) or a 6 quart plastic tupperware and pour 1/4 cup of olive oil in the bottom. Gently spoon the dough on top of the olive oil, scraping the bowl clean. Use your hands to spoon a little olive oil from the sides of the dough onto the top. Cover tightly with a fitting lid or snuggly applied saran wrap. Put in the fridge for at least 8 hours or up to 2 days.
When it's time to bake, pull the dough from the refrigerator. Take a standard large cookie sheet (18" x13") and rub generously with olive oil. Remove lid from dough bowl and gently pour dough onto cookie sheet. Gently push the dough to the edge. Let rest until it comes to room temperature, 40 min to an hour or more (unless it is very hot in your kitchen in which case it could be as short as 20 min). You'll know it's ready when it has doubled in bulk.
Dimple the spongy dough with your fingers, making small indentations, like you are playing the piano. Do the whole sheet then drizzle with more olive oil. Yes, there is a lot of olive oil :) Sprinkle with salt and whatever toppings you want to try.
Put into a preheated 450 degree oven and bake from 25-30 min (I go as much as 35) so that the focaccia is crisp and cooked but not burned. Cool on a wire rack, then use a metal spatula to remove from pan. Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy!