Rosemary & Basil Focacciaby fig + fauna farm on 07/02/12
While the dough is rising, the sun is full. Ear to ear, it wears a smile - one that seems to invite us to play in its warmth. These moments can't be purchased and neither can a bread that you have worked between your fingers with a toddler covered in flour. I did promise a summer of picnics not long ago and so we pack our basket and stomp around the bees and tall green grass. Grandma enjoys the afternoon with us - I listen in on their big conversations about tiny things, such as bugs and snails...these findings are true treasures!
I can smell the bread so well as the basket swings in my arms, and I know just what is in store for us: crispy on the outside and warm, melt-in-your-mouth texture on the inside. The herbs soothe me in my mouth, just as it does when I run my fingers over our rosemary bushes, awakening the fragrant oils of the plant.
/// PHOTOS BY ROSE E MARTIN
ROSEMARY & BASIL FOCACCIA
Adapted from The Herb Bible - Jennie Harding
2 2/3 cups White Whole Wheat Flour, plus extra for dusting
1 envelope active dry yeast
1 1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tbsp honey
1 1/4 cups hand-hot water
3 tbsp EVOO, plus extra for greasing
4 tbsp finely chopped Rosemary & Basil
Polenta for sprinkling
Combine flour, yeast and salt in a bowl and make a well in the center. Gradually stir in the water, 2 tablespoons of EVOO and honey to make dough.
Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead. Sprinkle herbs into the dough and work through until soft but not sticky. Shape dough into a ball and place in a oiled bowl - cover bowl and set in a warm place to rest until dough has doubled in volume. Sprinkle polenta over a baking sheet.
Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and lightly knead. Let stand for ten minutes. Roll out and at dough into a circle about 1 inch thick and carefully transfer it to the baking sheet, placing it on top of the polenta.
Using a lightly oiled finger, poke indentations all over the surface of the loaf. Drizzle remaining EVOO over the top and sprinkle with sea salt. Bake in a preheated oven, 450 degrees for 15 minutes or untill the top is golden and it sounds hollow when tapped. Let cool on a wire rack and devour quickly!