I am a 30 something single mom from D.C. who likes to cook, hike, play games, make cards and watch movies. I tend to love making stews, one-pot meals, desserts for breakfast and breakfast for dinner!
I'm 11 years old, love food and my mom says I need practice writing! I am a Star Wars loving, circia 1940's comic book collecting math nerd who plays electric guitar. I play Halo Reach and Call of Duty: Black Ops II with my friends and am in the 6th grade.
Focaccia are Italian flat breads seasoned with olive oil, salt and herbs. Even though I am Italian, I never had focaccia growing up. The first focaccia that I ever had was pre-made from Whole Foods and it was mushy and gross. I just assumed I didn’t like focaccia – until I had real, fresh focaccia.
Fresh focaccia is bready in the inside and crisp on the outside. Because it is coated with olive oil and cooked in a very hot oven, the crust almost becomes deep fried. YUM.
Focaccia – as with most breads, takes time. It sounds like a lot, but I make my breads throughout the day while doing other things. Fresh bread is worth it!
1 cup warmer than lukewarm water (give or take depending on humidity in air)
1 teaspoon sugar
2¼ teaspoons yeast (or one packet)
2 teaspoons salt
Sea salt for garnish
2 teaspoons of herb of choice (I used rosemary dipping herbs)
If your yeast is not instant yeast, proof yeast by placing it in half of the water with half of the sugar. (If you have instant yeast, skip to step 2).
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together all of the dry ingredients (including flavored herbs) and stir in half of the water.
Continue to add water and mix until the dough is soft and elastic. (Not too sticky, not too dry).
Coat a clean mixing bowl with olive oil and place the ball of dough into the bowl, coating the top of the dough with oil as well.
Cover with saran wrap and allow to rise for at lest 45 minutes, up to 12 hours. (mine sat for 4 hours).
When the dough has doubled in size, knead the dough a few times, and divide in half.
Coat two 8 inch cake pans (round or square) or one small jelly roll pan or baking sheet with edges with olive oil. (I used two round 8″ cake pans).
Place the two halves into each of the cake pans and spread the dough edge to edge with your finger tips. It’s ok if you tear the dough a little and leave a lot of indentations. (Focaccia is supposed to be “bumpy”). I found that sprinkling the tops with a little bit of flour helped keep it from “bouncing back”.
Drizzle the tops with olive oil and use your hands or basting brush to spread the oil over the tops. Sprinkle with sea salt and a little more of the herbs you mixed in.
Allow to rise in a dark warm place for another 30 minutes.
While the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (with a baking stone in the oven as it preheats if you have one – not necessary. I have one but didn’t use it because it’s not big enough to hold both cake pans).
Once the oven is heated to 500 degrees, place both pans in the oven on the middle shelf.
Cook for 15-20 minutes. (Mine cooked 17 minutes).
Upon taking them out of the oven, turn them out onto a wire rack and remove from the pans. If you leave them in the pan, the bottoms will get soggy from the steam).
Allow to cool for at least 10-15 minutes before cutting and serving.
If any of you know me in real life (or maybe even not!), then you know that I am out of control petrified of vomiting. In the midst of stomach flu season, I will try anything to prevent myself from becoming ill.
Enter Welch’s 100% grape juice (no sugar added). I’m not sure if there is any science behind this or if it is an old wives tale, but it is said to stop norovirus from replicating in your intestines with it’s antiviral properties and by changing the pH level in your intestines.
This brings the purple monster smoothie to you today!