So many of you have asked about this, I thought I’d share so everyone can learn to love (and make repeatedly) this wonderful bread! You can have this bread on the table in less than 30 minutes, just be sure to pre-heat your oven first!
2 cups flour
1 cup lukewarm water
1 tsp dry yeast
1 tsp sugar (only if baking right away!)
1 tsp salt
Olive oil for the pan
Yep! That’s it. Four ingredients and warm water. Here’s what I used: (Ohhhh shameless product plugs!)
Pour the water into a bowl and add the (sugar – if you are baking right away), salt and yeast. Let the yeast foam up and then leave it alone for five minutes! This is what it should look like:
Don’t worry about the clumps. It’s My Imperfect Kitchen, remember? ;-) I promise it won’t hurt the taste of the bread. Pour the flour into the bowl and mix well. It should look like this:
At this point you can cover it with plastic wrap and let it rise for 2 hours, or even overnight. For you morning people, you can put this together, then throw it in the oven (Make sure the oven is OFF) to rise all day while you are at work.
To those of you saying “Wait? I added sugar! You said you could make this in less than 30 minutes? Who wants to wait TWO HOURS for bread to rise?!?” To you, I say AMEN! We’re going to mix this up and toss it in the oven right now! The rest of you can follow along when your dough has risen to perfection.
Pre-heat your oven to 500 degrees. You want your oven nice and HOT.
Use an 8×8″ pan OR a metal pie pan. Just be sure it’s an 8″ pan. I’ve found the 9″ pans make the bread too thin. Coat the bottom (don’t be shy about this step) with olive oil and dump the bread dough into it. (Do not add any flour and don’t knead the dough – you will want to keep those lovely air bubbles!) Drizzle more olive oil over the top of the dough. Using your fingers (or let the kids do it!) spread the dough to the edges of the pan and poke holes into it. You want to see the bottom of the pan! This will give the olive oil a place to settle in and will let your crust be crisp, with that traditional Foccacia look, but still soft and yummy in the middle. Like this:
Now, top it with any ingredients you’d like. Tonight, I used Italian Seasoning, Parmesan cheese, basil, Sea Salt and Red Pepper Flakes. It looked like this:
Bake at 500 degrees for 10-15 minutes. Keep an eye on it. There should be enough oil in the pan so you can slide it out easily when it’s done.
Ta-DA! So delicious and so easy! Now you have bread to go with your dinner and your house will smell fabulous! You can also serve the bread as an appetizer to dip with olive oil and balsamic vinegar! You can also cut it in half horizontally and use it to make an Italian Sub Sandwich. Imagine ham and salami, layered with basil, fresh tomatoes, mozzarella and spicy peppers! Mmm-Mmm, I’m getting hungry! Here is what we are having for dinner tonight: Beautiful Foccacia, Baked Rigatoni with Spicy Italian Sausage and Roasted Zucchini! Enjoy your bread!