Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Saffron Focaccia

This is one of the first breads I ever made, and I have been making it ever since. I love the mild, subtle tang that the saffron adds to the dough. Plus, it is practically fool-proof. In the near twenty years that I've been using this recipe, I think it has failed me only once.

What you use as topping is, of course, up to you.

Saffron Focaccia

pinch saffron
2/3 c boiling water
2 c flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp dry yeast
1 T olive oil

2 cloves garlic, sliced
1 red onion, cut into thin wedges
rosemary sprigs
12 black olives, pitted and coarsely chopped
1 T olive oil
coarse salt

Place saffron in a heatproof cup and pour on boiling water. Leave to stand for 5 minutes.

Place flour, salt, yeast and olive oil in a food processor. Pulse to combine. Gradually add the saffron and its liquid. Process until dough forms a ball.

Turn onto a floured board and knead 10-15 minutes. Place in a bowl, cover, and let rise 30-40 minutes, or until doubled.

Punch dough down and roll out into an oval shape, 1/2" thick. Place on a lightly greased cookie sheet, cover, and let rise 20-30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 400. Press small indentations over the surface of the bread, using your finger.

Cover with topping ingredients.

Brush lightly with olive oil and bake 25 minutes, or until the loaf sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.

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