Sunday, July 31, 2011

Rosemary Focaccia and Book Giveaway!

You would think I have not cooked or baked anything in the last couple weeks since I've been staying at my son's house watching their 16yr. old sweet Black Lab named Thai whom I thought was still only 13yrs old. She is actually going to be 17, and still going strong...although she is practically deaf, has major cataracts, but is as beautiful and sweet, with a shiny black  hair her tummy totally grey now, and in the best shape ever (meaning she is not overweight)...Family finally came home last night, and I'm so happy that they all had such a great time.
I, in the meantime have been eating at my daughter's house and enjoying company with Fabrizio's young cousins from Italy. Two lovely young girls, ages 18 and 20. Lora and I were taking turns cooking the main meal at lunch time, and also for dinner. I decided to make my favorite rosemary focaccia...with lots of fresh chopped focaccia, homegrown from their little garden. I've been trying to find a decent photo of this, but what difference does it make?...not even trying to get into the Top 9 for Foodbuzz, so "what you see is what you get" is what it is!!!
Sometimes I prefer a nice simple focaccia instead of pizza, because it does take less work and you don't even need a topping other than fresh herbs. The dough is so fresh, the topping is crunchy, and I also added fresh course sea salt on the top before I baked it. I love course sea salt, and also love salted bagels, but have to watch the sodium, because that can bloat you and too much of a "good thing" can harm your health!

Before I continue the rest of this post regarding rosemary focaccia, I would like to offer a very nice and unique book giveaway...another "thrift find" which is by the way a brand new book that I happened to find at my favorite Goodwill store. A few of you have it already a giveaway gift, from other bloggers, so now it's my turn to offer it as a giveaway since I do not bake in small quantities but I did want to get this book for a chance to offer it to someone that really could use it!

You honestly don't have to do a only applies to followers of my blog. Very simple! You have till Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011 11:00PM EST. to reply on my blog, and I will use to determine the winner, and will ship ANYWHERE else, outside United States and Canada. Now isn't that a nice offer? So drop me a few lines, and let me know if you're interested in  this wonderful Small-Batch Baking book!

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...and the winner is, Suhaina

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Thanks to all of you for your participation, and support!
adapted from Epicurious
Gourmet/March 2002

2(1/4-ounce) package active dry yeast
5 cups unbleached all-purpose flour plus additional for kneading
1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon coarse sea salt
Special equipment: a standing electric mixer with paddle attachment and dough hook

Stir together 1 2/3 cups lukewarm (105 to 115°F) water and yeast in bowl of mixer and let stand until creamy, about 5 minutes. Add 5 cups flour, 1/4 cup oil, and 2 1/2 teaspoons table salt 1 tablespoon of the chopped fresh rosemary, and beat with paddle attachment at medium speed until a dough forms. Replace paddle with dough hook and knead dough at high speed until soft, smooth, and sticky, 3 to 4 minutes.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead in 1 to 2 tablespoons more flour. Knead dough 1 minute (it will still be slightly sticky), then transfer to a lightly oiled bowl and turn dough to coat with oil. Let rise, covered with plastic wrap, at warm room temperature, until doubled in bulk, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

Press dough evenly into a generously oiled 15- by 10- by 1-inch baking pan. Let dough rise, covered completely with a kitchen towel, until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 425°F.
Stir together rosemary and remaining 3 tablespoons oil. Make shallow indentations all over dough with your fingertips, then brush with rosemary oil, letting it pool in indentations. Sprinkle sea salt evenly over focaccia and bake in middle of oven until golden, 20 to 25 minutes.
Immediately invert a rack over pan and flip focaccia onto rack, then turn right side up. Serve warm or at room temperature.

The only adaptation I did was to added2 envelopes of the dry yeast, equal to 2 Tbsps. I originally had this recipe from my Gourmet magazine of March 2002 issue but it was easier to upload the recipe from Epicurious, and adapting it a little.

Look at these specks of the fresh rosemary right in the, why would you not want to add more of the lovely chopped aromatic fresh rosemary to it?...dough is now turned out unto a board, adding a couple more tablespoons of flour for ease of working it and not sticking to the board.

Now, you are ready to turn dough over in a lightly oiled large bowl, after kneading it for a few minutes longer.

Cover bowl with plastic wrap, and a dishtowel and  keep it in a draft free, warm place (I just kept it on top of the stove) for 1 1/2 hours.

The result after 1 1/2 hours. It reached all the way to the top of the bowl...this is why I use double amt. of the yeast (2 packets=2 Tbsp)

Now, punch down lightly on the dough, and you are ready to turn it out onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet.

This is another adaptation of mine; I sprayed the baking pan, lined it with parchment paper, and sprayed the parchment paper with cooking spray. The dough spreads so easily from one end to to other, just stretching it gently. When your dough does that, this is the proof to find out that you will have a perfect dough. Here's another important part. After you stretched the dough cover again with a clean dish towel, and let it rest for an additional 1 hour.

After it rested for an hour just gently poke  little pockets in a form of pattern the way you like, and add the additional chopped rosemary to the reserved olive oil, and brush it on, filling the little pockets as well.

You can brush additional olive oil on it after it bakes to a golden color, because you will be wondering what happened to all the olive oil that was brushed on literally soaks it all up!

Family dinner, on a weekday off with Chef Fabrizio's (son-in-law's) day off to enjoy dinner with family. On the top photo. On the left, Silvia, (with dark hair, Stefania, Lora in the middle, Luca, Fabrizio, and on the right front granddaughter Gabby who will be 10 next month.
I made the baked salmon rubbed with brown sugar, ginger, paprika rub, with a balsamic, honey, lime glaze. Steak, grilled by Fabrizio, and my focaccia, and perfectly ripe diced tomatoes (from Cuban produce market) a red wine vinaigrette, with caper berries, slice thin Spanish onions. Dessert, not shown by daughter, Lora!

Here are some more focaccia links, from the Zemanta program I use, which is a good way to get your blog name out there...use's free, and you will love it as much as I do!

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  1. Elisabeth...everything looks so are so lucky to have family and friends with you...and you are such a good grandma to kids and pets...

  2. Foccacia looks fantastic..I love it too on my table when people can rip a piece and have it with all the other yummies:)
    Great book to have:)
    I am also having a book away, of 2 great cookbooks
    It is easy to take aprt and everyone is welcome

  3. your family is so lucky to have you, lovely photos,, yum!!

  4. What a awesome family I just feel like I walked into your home love this! Foccacia is my fav dont need much other than that a good cabernet Coppola is my fav... love the chocolate cookbook nice giveaway for sure!

  5. Your focaccia looks delicious. Beautiful family, God bless ;)


  6. Elisabeth,
    Your are very lucky to have such a wonderful family so close to you. All of the dishes are gorgeous, and I would love to make your salmon with the rub.

    I can always use another cookbook, and small batch baking would be good, when I'm making something for just my husband and I.

  7. Hi Elisabeth! Thanks for coming back to me too. I have been leaving you comments even for the blog award. Not sure why it didn't appear. Do check your previous blog post, I think under the awards and brownie, it should be there I hope. I was so thrilled that you gave me another award. Nothing I can say other than I really truly appreciate it. How can I not when I adore you so much not only as a foodie friend but most of all a chef.

    Btw, your focaccia bread looks heavenly. I love dipping them in balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil with mixed herbs. Yummmmm!! Oh! I love the book you selected. Hopefully I have some luck this time.. Hugs, Jo

  8. I can just imagine how you kitchen must smell now - wish I had some of your focaccia.

  9. That was a great family gathering, love your salmon again! The focaccia is a good compliment to those delicious food. Like your new message written on the welcome to my blog, so friendly and relaxing kind of introduction. If you would post your book to Australia, I wouldn't mind to try my luck as the pics of the choc dessert is so tempting!

  10. I love Focaccia! Give me a big slab of that and little else and I'm a happy girl. Your family dinner looks wonderful! And I love the sound of the book - I am always trying to scale down desserts for my family.

  11. I could enjoy this book fully since there's only 3 of us and 1 happens to not like sweets - I know right? Who doesnt love sweets?!

  12. Hi Elisabeth,
    Your foccacia looks great! Thanks for the step-by-step tutorial.

    Your giveaway book sounds great. Love to have one.

  13. It is what it is and it IS wonderful...the focaccia bread made my mouth water, and so did your other photos of delicious meals and the pics just show that you are enjoying each other and life! You are very blessed and your family is blessed to have you!

  14. wow...I too baked rosemary focassia for the first time few days back...I added in some dry oregano too..thats the only difference,, Had it with some tomato soup...It was yummy...looked just like ur focassia dear.
    The family looks so happy with all those delicious food in front of them.
    Hope they all enjoyed the food.

  15. By the way I am also giving away the packet of yeast that I mentioned to you earlier..
    Your is a lovely giveaway dear.. Wish I can have my hands on it, if I am the lucky one...
    Hope to see more of ur lovely posts.
    Luv Suhaina.

  16. foccacia looks fabulous - i love rosemary on it! so lucky u have such wonderful family to spend time with, only a few blocks down! do u live close to your son and daughter as well? any other special plans for the summer?

  17. I love the way you just put all of thr food on the table and people just go for it, my style of eating and very social. The bread looks awesome and oily/herby!
    Thanks for sharing...

  18. Mmmmmm !!! The foccacia looks gorgeous , and the rest of the food is mouth watering as well, would love to get my hands on that book , keeping my fingers crossed :D.

  19. Very flavorful focaccia, I wish I could have some!SLURP!It seems like you're having a great time Elisabeth..Keep enjoying!

  20. Everything looks so delicious! The focaccia is gorgeous, and is something I could eat at every meal. :) The cookbook looks like it would be a good one- sometimes if I need a little treat I don't want to have a lot of leftovers.

  21. Ez a menü nagyon finom lehetett! Guszta a foccaciád. Jó. hogy fázisfotókkal is bemutatod. Kedvet kaptam. :)
    Helyes a családod. :)

  22. Fabulous foccacia... Love the beautiful golden color and the sheen from the olive oil! I make foccacia quite often, and I think I'll try your recipe the next time :) Thanks for an international giveaway :D I would love that book... I have been converting a lot of my recipes into small batch recipes, and this book would be a great help! Keeping my fingers crossed, and praying I win! Thanks for sharing your recipe, and for the giveaway, Elisabeth!

  23. Szép kis családod van Elisabeth, sokat vagytok együtt, és ez nagyon jó. Még sosem sütöttem focacciat, de készülök kipróbálni egy paradicsomosat. A sütis könyv is nagyon szép, nekem is tetszik, csak én sajnos nagyon messzire lakom tőled.

  24. Wow, this giveaway is for all. I would love to read this book and cook some recipes from it.

  25. Delicious! My Italian neighbor sautees onions on her foccacia. It's incredible.

    That book looks incredible too! ^_^

  26. I was loving the looki of the focaccia and imagining the taste of it and then got to the step-by-step photos. I always love step-by-steps.
    And yes, please put my name forward for the giveaway. Would you like me to add it to The Food Blog Diary?

  27. Great Scott! That bread looks heavenly! I dunno about it being 'easy' but it sure looks G-O-O-D! Buzzed :)

  28. Nagyon finom szeretem az ilyen remek tésztákat

  29. Everything is beautiful. Love foccacia bread, especially homemade.

    Would love an opportunity win that small batch cookbook. :-)


  30. Yummm ... love focaccia, rosemary and all sorts! And another sunshiney moment in your life! Happy faces all round .... I'd be happy too with such good food :D

  31. The bread looks amazing! I'm a sucker for the aroma of fresh bread and garlic. Also, I'm completely interested in the book giveaway! I'm a single person who stays away from making desserts since I can't (or at least shouldn't) eat an entire cake!

  32. How fantastic. Focaccia is in my to bake list. I really want to give it a go... hopefully sometime soon. And with rosemary, so aromatic and simply delicious. Thanks for the inspiration.

  33. For some reason, I have been hesitant to try focaccia. You make it sound so simple. I a inspired!

  34. Beautiful looking bread, so golden and crusty on top. I used to make focaccia years ago and I need to take it up again.

    I'm interested in the book also, as there are only two of us at home :)

  35. I love simple Italian bread, could even eat them as a dessert or snack! No kidding!
    I WANT the book too, but I wish all of your readers GOOD LUCK as they all deserve it.


  36. As an Italian living in Canada for over 10 years, I loved your post - that's a beautiful focaccia right there, and a beautiful family :)

  37. Looks very rich n lovely...beautiful clicks..:)
    Tasty Appetite

  38. With you family, I think I'd be happy to sit back and let them cook for me too. I love focaccia, I actually prefer it over pizza. I agree salt is good, but bad for you. Glad you are being careful. Great find, I'm sure someone would love to have it, I have a copy - so please make sure someone else who could use it gets it. Hope you have a great week.

  39. what a feast!! and what a lovely giveaway - I am so new to baking, a complete novice with MUCH to learn, so something like this could be a great guide for someone like me LOL!! This focaccia is simply gorgeous, I have never made focaccia, but really really want to try!!! I can imagine myself sitting at the table with your family sharing all of this amazing food and wonderful conversation....and I am chuckling to myself about Thai, what a cute name!!!

  40. The bread looks delightful, just as it is. I love rosemary. (Imagine!) I've looked at the first Small-Batch book but didn't buy it. Since I'm empty nesting, it would be perfect. Wait till you see my meatloaf muffins! And thanks again for the award, Elisabeth. I've finally passed it on!

  41. Very impressive feast for lunch! You're fortunate to be surrounded by a loving family that loves good food, especially Italian food;-)
    I also have a copy of this book but someone else will be very lucky to win one, it's a very useful cookbook for creating small batch desserts, something I rarely do;-)

  42. Your focaccia looks wonderful! It has always been at the top of my list of favorites and oh how I love rosemary :) Plus I agree makes a perfect lunch with a bit of cheese perhaps :)
    Great that you found that cookbook at the thrift store...

  43. Hi Elizabeth,
    What a wonderful gathering and your food looks awesome. I always love coming to your blog you always have the most wonderful goodies! I love your Focaccia, I wish it was not so hot here, I would just make it, oh well I will just save it for a cooler day. Hope you are having a fabulous week!
    Miz Helen

  44. That foccacia bread looks really good.
    Sounds like a good book to have so I'm definitely interested. :)
    That baked salmon looks delicious, too. Everyone looks so happy in the photo. :)

  45. Dear Elisabeth! There is a fashion in Hungary. The bloggers give prizes to each other into a gift. Blogger like that we give these prizes to a companion, who we love. I would like to give a prize like this, at which you can look on my blog, to you. It is the task with the prize that you have to send who you love to 10 bloggers like that.

  46. Hello Elisabeth! What a lovely recipe for one of my favorite ways to start a meal. This herbed focaccia is making me hungry for fresh bread! I actually already have this book...and I love it! Thank you so much for sharing with me. You are always inspiring me to get into my kitchen. I hope you have a great day, my friend. Love from Austin!

  47. Are you sure we're not related? Hahah I wish I could be a part of your family, not only for the food, but for the wonderful company. I;ll prolly not get hungry when I'm around your place.. ahh this bread makes me want to have some!

  48. Elisabeth, küldtem neked egy emailt, légyszives olvasd el.

  49. I LOVE focaccia n rosemary focaccia definitely tops the chart ~ this one of the best looking I have seen!
    Your giveaway sounds so much fun n I will definitely love to lay my hands on that dessert cookbook :)
    Us Masala

  50. Elisabeth, your yeast fear is far behind you. Your focaccia looks great! I was just thinking of making a focaccia these days, maybe I'll do one this coming weekend although I have some friends coming over for a couple of days.
    The book is a keeper, I have Debby's other book, baking in small batches and I love it.

  51. I am too late for son broke his foot so I am taking care of him. Your focaccia look amazing, I made it few days ago and I will have to try your recipe too! Wonderful post!!


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