Focaccia for a Crowd
1 1/2 cups bread flour
1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons active dry yeast (2 pkgs)
1 1/3 cups warm water (110°)
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary OR basil
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
DO NOT PREHEAT OVEN.
In a large stoneware bowl, stir flours and salt. Make a well in the center, sprinkle sugar and yeast into well. Carefully pour water into well & let stand till yeast begins to act, about 5 minutes. Pour 2 tablespoons oil into the well. With a wooden spoon stir the mixture in center of bowl, gradually widening the circle of stirring to take in all of the flour on the sides. Turn out on floured surface and knead just till smooth. Divide in half. Pour 1/2 teaspoon of oil into two clean bowls, place dough in bowls, turning once to coat. Cover and let rise until doubled.
Punch dough down. Use 1 teaspoon oil to coat a baking sheet and place dough on the center. Gently press the dough out to about 1/2 inch thickness. Pour 1 1/2 teaspoons oil over the top of the dough. Use the handle end of a wooden spoon or your fingers to "dimple" the dough at 1 1/2 inch intervals. Sprinkle with rosemary or basil and then cheese. Place in a COLD oven on center shelf. Place a flat pan of very hot water on the shelf below the bread. Let rise until doubled. Turn on oven to 375° and bake 20-25 minutes or until browned on top. Remove from pan and cool on a wire rack. Makes 2 large loaves.
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