It took me a long time to get comfortable with yeast. Not until I decided to proof my yeast with pretty much every recipe did I finally feel comfortable making yeast breads. Now I can’t stop. The proof is definitely in the proof. Haha, you see what I did there? Cheesy right? Anyways,
This may sound weird but I love watching yeast bloom. When I was making this I was ohhing and aweing while my husband stood next to me. I was “LOOK AT THAT”, “OMG DID YOU SEE THAT”. He thought I was absolutely crazy. I find something so interesting on how yeast reacts when it is placed in liquid. Just knowing that it is alive and has that type of reaction intrigues me. Moving on from my nerdy self now! I love focaccia bread. Besides sourdough, focaccia is my all time fave! I could sit down and eat this for every meal of the day. Ha, that’s exactly what I did this morning. Took it out and cut myself a piece and munched away. My daughter decided she wanted some to, so sadly I had to share!
As you can see this recipe made 2 loaves. I made a rosemary and tomato and then a rosemary,olive and parmesan since my husband doesn’t dig tomatoes. If you are wanting to make the olive version just sub out the tomatoes with sliced black olives and then sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Easy peasy, which this bread is. The only thing I hate about yeast bread is that you have to let it rise. I can be an impatient person when it comes to food, especially when it comes to having to wait for fresh-baked bread. But in the end I do realize that it’s worth it and quit my pouting and just wait.
Serving Size- 2 loaves
1/4 cup olive oil plus 3 Tbs, divided
1 1/2 tsp active dry yeast
1 1/2 cup warm water, divided
1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
3-4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for kneading
2 tsp dried crushed rosemary, divided
1-2 roma tomatoes. sliced thin
Pre-heat oven to 375. In a large bowl dissolve yeast in 1/4 up water. Add your sugar and let sit for about 5 minutes and let yeast proof. Once proofed add 2 Tbs oil, salt and the rest of your water. Stir in flour one cup at a time until a soft dough forms. Dump out onto a floured surface and knead until dough becomes smooth, adding more flour to reduce the stickiness. Add in 1 tsp rosemary and knead for about 1 minute longer until rosemary is combined into dough. Place dough ball in greased bowl and turn so the dough ball is covered in oil. Cover and let rise in warm place until doubled in size.
Once risen, punch dough down and turn out onto a lightly floured surface, divide in half. Stretch each portion out flat. Grease 1 or 2 baking sheets and stretch your dough into a rectangle shape, cover with plastic wrap and let dough rise a second time until doubled in size.
Once risen, brush your loaves with olive oil place your sliced tomatoes on top and sprinkle with salt and remaining rosemary. Bake for about 25 minutes or until tops are golden. Remove from oven and cool. Cut into sticks or wedges and enjoy!
Recipe adapted from The Taste of Home Cookbook
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