I love bread, and one of the best summer breads I end up making more often is Focaccia. Love the taste and mix of flavors. It’s easier to make than most think really it is. You won’t regret trying to make it!
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 teaspoon honey or sugar
3/4 cup lukewarm water (110 – 115 degrees)
1 cup room temp water
2/3 bread flour
4 cups white flour (all purpose)
1/4 cup whole wheat
2 teaspoons salt
3/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
1 bushel asparagus, washed and dried. Trim off the white ends
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese.
Sprinkle the dry yeast over the lukewarm water. (Measure it in a measuring cup then pour it into a medium sized bowl ) Let is sit for about 5 minutes then stir in the honey or sugar. Allow it to sit for another 5 minutes or until bubbly. Add the bread flour and combine to form the sponge
Rest for 30 minutes, the sponge will rise a lot during this stage.
In another bowl combine the white and whole wheat flours together along with the salt. Make a well then add the finished sponge. Add 3/4 cup of oil, and remaining cup of water. Mix until combined. Once it’s mixed, dump the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth. Wouldn’t take very long at all. (5 minutes should be good) Place the dough in a well oiled (just spray with Pam) and cover with plastic. Let it rise in a warm spot until it doubles in volume. It will take about 1 1/2 hours. Do not rush this rise.
Preheat the oven to 350F.
Brush a cookie sheet with the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil. Place the dough in the center then using your fingers to spread it out till it reaches 8×12 inches. Do not roll this out.
When the dough has just started to rise again (just let it rest about 10 minutes) lay asparagus on dough and slightly press down to fix them into place. Allow the dough to rise again, it will take anywhere from 15-30 minutes shouldn’t be any longer.
Bake until slightly browned, 30 minutes in the 350 degree oven. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese and bake for 10 more minutes.