Foolproof Focaccia

READY IN: 55mins




  • Boil potato in water and simmer until tender (about 25 minutes).
  • Drain potato well and cool.
  • Grate potato through large holes on box grater, fine disk on ricer or food processor.
  • Reserve 1-1/3 cups lightly packed potato.
  • Meanwhile, In food processor mix or pulse yeast, 1/2 cup flour, and 1/2 cup warm water until combined.
  • Cover tightly with plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place, until bubbly (about 20 minutes).
  • Add remaining dough ingredients (including the remaining 3 cups flour), including reserved potato.
  • Process dough for about 40 seconds until it's smooth and elastic.
  • Transfer dough to lightly oiled bowl, turn to coat with oil and cover tightly with plastic wrap.
  • let rise in warm area until dough is puffy and doubled in volume (about an hour).
  • With wet hands (to prevent sticking) press dough flat into oiled or sprayed with Pam 15 1/2 by 10 1/2 jelly roll pan (I sprinkle a little flour on top of dough and gently pat it into shape. I don't make it quite as large, since I like it really thick).
  • Cover dough with lightly greased plastic wrap (dough will stick otherwise) and let rise in warm area, about 45 minutes to an hour, until dough is puffy and doubled.
  • Preheat oven to 425°F.
  • Adjust oven rack to lower middle position.
  • With two wet fingers, dimple risen dough at regular intervals.
  • Drizzle dough with oil, and sprinkle evenly with the rosemary, salt, landing some in pools of oil.
  • Bake until focaccia bottom is golden and crisp, 23-25 minutes.
  • Yields: one 15 1/2 by 10 1/2 inch rectangle or 2 8 inch rounds.
  • *Note: focaccia can be kept on counter for several hours and reheated just before serving.
  • Or, wrap cooled focaccia in plastic wrap, and then foil and freeze for up to 1 month (unwrap and defrost in 325°F oven until soft, about 15 minutes).
  • Parmesan Focaccia: substitute 2/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese for the rosemary and coarse sea salt.
  • Focaccia with Black Olives and Thyme: substitute 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leave and 24 pitted large black olives (one per oil-filled dimple) for rosemary.