Friday, December 12, 2008

Tomato Focaccia

Italian flat bread flavored with sun-dried tomatoes, Parmesan cheese and rosemary. Recipe serves 10-12.


6 cups strong all-purpose (plain) flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 sachets rapid-rise dried yeast
2 ounces (60 g) Parmesan cheese, grated
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 pint (150 ml) milk
1/2 cup olive oil
3.5 ounces (100 g) sun-dried tomatoes in oil ( about 1/2 cup) drained and chopped


1. Sift the flour and salt into a large mixing bowl. Mix in the yeast, Parmesan, rosemary and pepper. Heat together the milk and 1/2 pint (300 ml) water until lukewarm, then add half the olive oil. Pour into the flour mixture and stir to form a soft dough, adding more water if needed.
2. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead well for 5 minutes, or until smooth. Add the sun-dried tomatoes and knead into the dough for 2-3 minutes.
3. Place the dough in a large, lightly oiled, mixing bowl; cover with oiled, clear plastic wrap and a tea towel. Leave to rise in a warm place for 30-40 minutes, or until the dough has doubled in size.
4. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease two 13 x 9 inch (33 x 23 cm) Swiss roll tins with olive oil.
5. Remove dough from the bowl and knead lightly for a few seconds. Divide into equal halves, then roll out to fit the tins. Drizzle the remaining oil over the dough. Cover loosely with clear plastic wrap or a damp tea towel and leave to rise for about 30 minutes.
6. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until risen and golden brown.

Cooks Tip: Instead of using fresh olive oil, take some from the jar of sun-dried tomatoes. The oil will have a delicious flavor absorbed from the tomatoes and herbs.

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