Adapted from “Focaccia” by Carol Field. I am not sure how authentic this bread is, but it sure is good! The question you may have is: Do you taste the wine? We could really not detect the flavor of wine however we did smell the wine while the bread baked. I think it would be safe to add a little more wine, perhaps up to three quarters of a cup (?) and compensate by decreasing the water. I'll test one half cup wine next time I bake this bread and see what happens and update the recipe if necessary. Finally, I did not add any spices to the bread for the simple reason I wanted to test if I could detect the wine flavor. *Update*- 8 May 2011: if you read Chef Kate's review she explains the recipe well and much better than I ever could.
- 2 1⁄2 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 2⁄3 cup warm water
- 1 cup unbleached flour (4.9 ounces, or 140 grams)
Dough and assembly
- 1⁄2 cup water
- 1⁄3 cup dry white wine
- 1⁄3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus about 2 tablespoons for drizzling
- 2 1⁄2 cups unbleached flour, plus 2 teaspoons unbleached flour plus 1 to 2 tablespoons as needed (12.7 ounces, or 360 grams)
- 2 teaspoons coarse salt, plus 1/2 3/4 to 1 teaspoon for sprinkling (I used Sicilian salt for sprinkling)
- Note: I used a KitchenAid stand up mixer to prepare this recipe.
- Sprinkle the yeast over the warm water in a large mixing bowl, stir it in and set aside until creamy, about 10 minutes.
- Stir in the flour and beat until smooth. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and set aside to rise until puffy and bubbling, about 30 minutes.
- To the sponge in the large bowl, add the water, wine and 1/3 cup olive oil, and stir to combine.
- If mixing by hand, whisk in 1 cup of flour and 2 teaspoons salt, then beat in the rest of the flour until you have a dough that is very soft and very sticky.
- Knead on a lightly floured board with the help of a dough scraper and 1 to 2 additional tablespoons of flour until the dough comes together nicely and is silky and shiny, 6 to 8 minutes; it should remain soft but not wet.
- If mixing with a mixer, using the *paddle attachment* beat together the water, wine, 1/3 cup olive oil and sponge.
- Add the flour and 2 teaspoons salt and mix until the dough comes together (it will be very soft).
- Change to the *dough hook* and knead for 3 minutes at medium speed, stopping once or twice to press the dough into a ball to aid in the kneading.
- Remove the dough from the bowl and knead by hand using the 1 to 2 additional tablespoons of flour to finish, 6 to 8 turns at most. It should remain soft but not wet.
- Place the dough in a large, lightly oiled container, cover it tightly with plastic wrap, and set aside until doubled, about 1 hour.
- The dough should be soft and full of air bubbles and should stretch easily.
- Press it into a well-oiled (17-by-12-inch) jelly roll pan (I used parchment paper-fyi), dimple it well with your fingertips or knuckles (I used the end of a wooden spoon), cover with a tea towel and let rise until puffy and doubled, about 45 minutes.
- If the dough springs back before it is completely stretched, set it aside to “relax” the dough for a few minutes, then stretch again; the dough will stretch more easily after it is rested.
- At least 30 minutes before you plan to bake, heat the oven to 425 degrees with a baking stone inside on the lowest shelf.
- Once again, dimple the top of the dough with your fingertips or knuckles, drizzle the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil so it pools in the little indentations and sprinkle with the remaining salt.
- Place the pan directly on the stone and immediately reduce the temperature to 400 degrees. Place a shallow metal container of water on the floor of the oven to make steam.
- Bake until the focaccia is golden (lift the bread to check underneath as well), 25 to 30 minutes (25 minutes for my loaf).
- Immediately remove from the oven and cool briefly on a rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.