Friday, November 30, 2007

Rosemary and Rock Salt Focaccia

Mui Fong bought a cookbook from Doulos the last time it docked here in KK. After she unwrapped and flipped through, she passed it to me and said ' Here, cook something from here and call me for dinner'. That's what sisters are for.

It is a book on whole foods for health and healing. I was not too keen on recipes from these because healthy usually means bland in my book. Anyway, it IS a cook book so I browsed through it and found this focaccia bread recipe which sound so very promising. I was absolutely amazed how well it turn out. That certainly taught me not to judge a book by it's cover.

Rosemary and Rock Salt Focaccia
300g bread flour (I used 1/3 wholemeal + 2/3 bread flour - makes it healthier still)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon dried yeast
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 sprigs rosemary, leaves only, chopped
10 black olives, pitted and roughly chopped - optional
1 tablespoon olive oil
~180ml water

I did 2x the recipe because I know the amount given is probably only enough for three in my family. Put all the above ingredients into a mixer with a dough attachment and mix for about 7-10 minutes (use those bread makers if you have one but just for the kneading and take the dough out to proof and shape). I then hand-kneaded the dough for another 5 minutes (an excuse to play with the dough) until it is smooth and shiny with a springy touch. That is one reason why I never get a bread maker, just can't resist the kneading - I actually find it therapeutic and a great way to give my biceps a work out!
Put the dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with a clean dish cloth. Leave to rise for 30-45 minutes, until the dough has doubled in size.

Turn out dough and knead lightly again for 1-2 minutes. Roll out to an oval (or rectangular) shape about 1 1/2 cm thick. Place onto a greased baking tray, cover loosely and leave it for 25-30 minutes to rise again.
Preheat the oven to 200C/400F.

For the topping
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons rock salt
1 sprig rosemary

Make indentations with fingers all over the top of dough. Drizzle 2 tablespoons of olive oil all over the top, then sprinkle with the rock salt and rosemary.

Bake for 25 minutes until golden. Transfer to a wire rack to cool and spoon the rest of the remaining olive oil over the bread.
Loved the scent of rosemary and garlic mingling with the aroma of freshly baked bread that permeated through the whole house.

Eat it on its own or do like Leanne, dipped into olive oil+balsamic vinegar. It just occurred to me that this bread would be so good with the roast lamb plus the drippings and also the moussaka!! Must bookmark it with these recipes...



frank said...

Man, that looks super super incredible! I want I want.

Looks fantastic. and comes with all your finger prints on it too (for authenticity).


a feast, everyday said...

taste really good too and yes, had a fun time dimpling d bread too.

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Jo, I made this bread yesterday! Although I didn't follow your recipe exactly, but I incorporated the chopped garlic and rosemary into the recipe I was using. It was really good! Like you I like making the little holes on the dough :D

Thanks for sharing such a wonderful recipe.