This wonderful Italian flatbread is among the easiest of all breads to prepare. It makes a wonderful (and quickly made) accompaniment to a meal and is also great for sandwiches.
Makes one 11-x-17-inch flatbread
3 1/4 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt
1 envelope active dry yeast
6 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 teaspoon Kosher or coarse salt
One 11-x-17-inch jelly roll pan
- Measure flour and salt into a mixing bowl and stir well to combine.
- Measure 1 1/3 cups warm tap water into a bowl and whisk in the yeast, then 3 tablespoons of the oil. With a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, stir the yeast mixture into the flour mixture until all the flour is evenly moistened, then beat vigorously for 1 minute. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and allow to rise at room temperature until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.
- Oil the jelly roll pan with half the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons of oil. Scrape the dough out of the bowl and onto the pan and pat and press the dough into the pan to fill it completely. If the dough resists, wait a few minutes and continue. With a fingertip, make impressions in the dough at 2-inch intervals. Drizzle dough with the remaining oil. Sprinkle with the Kosher or coarse salt.
- Cover the dough with a piece of oiled plastic wrap (oiled side down) and allow the dough to rise again until doubled in bulk, about 45 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 450 degrees and set a rack in the lower third.
- When dough has risen, bake until deep golden, about 25 minutes. Check the bottom about halfway through the baking time by lifting the side of the focaccia with a spatula or pancake turner. If it is coloring deeply, slide pan onto another pan to insulate bottom.
- Slide the focaccia off the pan onto a rack to cool. Serve warm or at room temperature in narrow slices, or cut into squares and split horizontally for sandwiches.