Saturday, January 31, 2009

Caramelized Onion and Roasted Rosemary Focaccia *Recipe 11 Page 212*

I'm lucky enough that I still have the same best friends since early elementary school. What does that have to do with caramelized onion focaccia? Well, when we were about 8 years old we would lay out on the front porch and eat cheese and crackers all afternoon while talking and sunbathing. Goodness knows that having a tan at 8 years old is very important! Well, one of my friends just wasn't into cheese with plain crackers. She is going to laugh when she reads this. She was always very creative and into different combinations. One day she decided that she was going to have onion crackers with peanut butter. She was a lover of onions at a young age and continues to be now. Well, nowadays there is no such thing as sunbathing for us four girls. We have 7 children between all of us, and another one on the way. Sunbathing is a distant memory. However, bread with onions and cheese......well that might be the perfect combination.

This was a very easy dough to make:
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 cup warm water (heated to 110-115)
2 tablespoons sugar
3-1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Combine yeast with warm water and sugar in a kitchen stand mixer bowl. Set aside for 5 minutes to dissolve and activate. Using the dough hook attachment, mix the yeast mixture on low speed while adding flour and salt. Once incorporated, knead dough on low speed for 10 minutes, until smooth and elastic. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and fold over it self a couple of times. Form into a ball and place in a greased bowl. Cover with a towel and set in a warm place for 1 hour until dough has doubled in volume.
While the dough was in the oven rising I sliced 2 large onions and caramelized them in a pan with some olive oil, salt and pepper for about 20-25 minutes. I took the leaves off of about 4 springs of rosemary and grated 1/4 Parmigiano-Reggiano. When the dough was ready I was sure to find my 7 year old daughter. Forget about sunbathing and eathing cheese and crackers. This girl has some aggression. She likes to punch dough. And I mean PUNCH with capitol letters. Grease a baking sheet and spread it out on the baking sheet, dough should be 1/2 thick and let sit covered for another 15 minutes. After resting for 15 minutes uncover and press down on it with your fingers to create several small dimples. Drizzle with olive oil and cover with onions, rosemary, and Parmigiano. Season with salt and pepper. Bake for 17-20 minutes. Transfer to a rack and cool.
This would be a good dough for pizza type toppings. Naturally, my husband thinks it would be better with meat. I made the recipe primarily to use on one of my next recipes, which is Tyler's Rosemary-Garlic Mozzarella Balls with Roasted Tomato Dipping Sauce. It calls for 3 cups of cubed focaccia.
Happy Weekend!

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