I’ve had the “The Ultimate Bread Machine Cookbook” for years, but I’ve hardly ever cooked anything from it until this year. As part of the Saturday lunch feast I prepared for some friends, I was too lazy to head to the bakery to buy fresh bread, so I decided to make focaccia in the bread machine (yes, I am aware how ridiculous this sounds!). I adapted the onion focaccia for what I had in the house and here’s the recipe:
210ml/7 1/2fl oz water
15ml/1 tablespoon olive oil
350g/12oz/3 cups white bread flour
2.5ml/ 1/2 teaspoon salt
5ml/1 teaspoon sugar
5ml/1 teaspoon easy-blend dried yeast
15ml/1 tablespoon mixed herbs (I used Italian herbs)
Additional olive oil, sea salt, black pepper and rosemary for the topping
1. Put the water, olive oil, bread flour, salt, sugar and yeast into the bread pan of your breadmaker in the order recommended by the manufacturer.
2. Set the bread machine to the dough setting. Press Start.
3. Lightly oil a 25-28cm (10-11in) shallow round cake tin or pizza pan.
4. When the dough cycle has finished, remove the dough from the pan and place it on a surface (ie your kitchen bench!) lightly dusted with flour.
5. Knock the dough back (ie punch it a few times, and listen to air hiss out of it) and flatten it slightly. Sprinkle over the mixed herbs, and knead gently to mix them in (I’ve misread the instructions in the past and thrown the herbs into the bread machine, and it doesn’t seem to make a difference).
6. Shape the dough into a ball , flatten it and roll it into a circle approximately the same size as the prepared pan. Place in the pan and cover with oiled clear film. Leave to rise in a warm place (I usually leave it by a sunny window or on top of the oven.)
7. Pre-heat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6. Uncover the focaccia and, using your fingertips, poke dimples into the dough over the surface. Cover and leave to rise for another 10-15 minutes.
8. Drizzle olive oil over the top (filling the dimples) and sprinkle with sea salt, black pepper and rosemary leaves.