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Monday, August 25, 2014

Focaccia with Roasted Vegetables - Avid Baker's Challenge

August 24, 2014

I've been very lax lately about baking, and I thought I was going to miss this baking challenge too, as it was mid-month and I hadn't done anything about baking bread.  Then I saw that others, including Hanaa herself, the Queen of ABC, were posting their focaccia adventures late, so I decided that I could too--as long as I got it done before September 1.

I've never made--or tasted, for that matter--a better focaccia than Rose's rosemary focaccia in The Bread Bible.  But you have to try new recipes, right?  This one was pretty good, and easy, but it didn't have the big holes, the perfect crust, or the flavor of Rose's.  One trick that this recipe - from King Arthur - had was to drizzle olive oil on the baking pan so that it was absorbed by the bottom of the crust.  I liked that.  And I will say that it was a very well-behaved dough.  After just one 15-minute rest, it stretched out to the sides of the pan quite nicely.

I used zucchini, cherry tomatoes, green onions, and garlic as the roasted vegetables.  Unfortunately, I sliced the garlic instead of leaving the cloves whole.  The result was slices of burned garlic, so I had to spend as much time fishing out those charred pieces as I did peeling and slicing them in the first place.  But the garlic still added some flavor to the oil.
I should have made thicker slices of zucchini.  By the time they were roasted, they were almost translucently thin.

Rose's recipe tells you to dimple the dough with your fingertips.  That technique really helps the dough's texture and makes it thin and crispy in some places.  It's a simple technique, and I would have used it here had I remembered it before now.

Do you know what makes a good, although unorthodox, breakfast?  A big slice of roasted vegetable focaccia and a fresh Colorado peach.  It's enough to make you forget that winter exists.

If you want to make this focaccia, click here for the recipe.  To see the other bakers' versions, go to Avid Baker's Challenge.