Summer Herb and Tomato Focaccia
I grow a lot of herbs and veggies in containers on my patio. Chili Piquin Peppers (RIDICULOUSLY hot TicTac sized peppers), Rosemary, Basil, Oregano, Chives, Mint, Jalapenos and cherry tomatoes. I found a recipe and changed it up a bit for a quick Sunday afternoon treat. I love focaccia and herbs and thought, "What the heck!?!" let's just marry them all together and see what comes up. Here's what I came up with.
2 cups warm water (110 degrees F)
3 tsp yeast (1.5 packets)
2 tsp salt - I like roasted garlic grey salt
3 + 3/4 cups good quality soft bread flour
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
¾ cup fresh herb leaves, chopped finely - I use Basil, Oregano and Rosemary because I grow them
1.5 Cups of small cherry tomatoes split lengthwise
1/2 cup grated cheese for sprinkling - I prefer Romano/Parmesan blend
ASSEMBLE AND BAKE
2. Put the yeast in a large mixing bowl and pour in the warm water.
3. Add the salt and 2 cups of the flour, mix into a soft and sticky dough.
4. Add the remaining 1 3/4 cups of flour and mix well. The dough should still be sticky. You want it sticky/wet to be able to rise well
5. Cover and let rise for 40-45 minutes in the warm oven
6. Turn the dough out onto the lined pan. Add about a third of the chopped herbs to the top of the dough, fold over and add another third; fold over again
7. Press out the dough on a well oiled, or silpat lined baking sheet. Using your fingers, ease it into a rectangle, approximately 9×13, give or take.
8. Put the olive oil in a small bowl and dip your fingers into the oil, and then all over the bread, poking the bread surface and leaving little pools of oil.
9. Poke the tomatoes all over the dough pressing them in slightly., then scatter the remaining herbs across the surface. Sprinkle your chosen salt over all, and finally sprinkle on the cheese.
10. Bake for 18-20 minutes until lightly golden.
11. I like to top off the freshly baked bread with coarsely chopped Basil because it is so fragrant and sort of "melts" into the toppings.