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POTATO, PESTO, CARAMELIZED ONION AND BLACK TRUFFLE OIL FOCCACIA

A meal in itself with a definite Italian list of ingredients.



This is what I have always imagined great foccacia should look and taste like.


RECIPE PRINTED FROM: THEGUTSYGOURMET.NET©
POTATO, PESTO & CARAMELIZED ONION FOCCACIA
INGREDIENTS:Makes 1 (14 inch foccacia)

INGREDIENTS FOR THE DOUGH:
●  3½ cups all purpose flour
●  1 cup warm water (between 90° and 110° F.)  100℉ is perfect
●  2 Tablespoon(s)  dry active yeast  (2 tablespoons, I like my dough a little yeasty. You can use less)
●  2 Tablespoon(s) honey
●  ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
●  ½ Teaspoon(s) salt

INGREDIENTS FOR THE TOPPING:
●  ¼ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
●  ¼ cup pesto,  home-made or from a jar
●  ¼ cup pre-cooked sautèed white or yellow onion
●  1 Tablespoon(s) finely diced rosemary leaves
●  1 Idaho or Oregon Russet potato sliced paper thin (crosswise slices)
●  ¼ cup shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
●  1 Tablespoon(s) Black or White Truffle oil or Extra Virgin Olive Oil
●  1 Teaspoon(s) sea salt


DIRECTIONS:  FOOD PROCESSOR MIXING  

1.  Some food processors come with a dough blade. If you have it use it. If you don't, just
    use the standard cutting blade.
 
2.  Pour in warm water. The water should be about 85-115℉. Test it with your hand. It should
    feel very warm, but comfortable. Add the honey and salt. Mix on low for about 20 seconds.

    Add the yeast and mix on low for another 5 seconds. 

    Add 1 cup of flour, mix on low for 10 seconds. 

    Add the olive oil and mix until blended (about 15 or 20 seconds more). 

    Add the rest of the flour (and any other additions) and mix on high for about a minute or
    two. The dough should turn into a ball and roll around the processor. If the dough does not
    ball up because it's too dry, add water one tablespoon at a time until it does. If your
    mixture is more like a batter, add flour one tablespoon at a time. Adding water or flour as
    needed to get the right consistency will assure you always get a perfect dough. Just
    remember to do it in small amounts.

2.  Once the dough is balled up, place the ball on a floured board and knead for about a minute.
    This builds the gluten which helps the dough to rise and become fluffy when cooked. Place
    the dough in a plastic grocery bag or a covered bowl and store in a warm, dry area to rise.

3.  After about 45 minutes the dough should have about doubled in size. Show it who's the boss
    and punch it down. That's right, give it a good smack so it deflates. Let it rise for
    another hour to an hour and a half. The dough is now ready to be rolled out. You can punch
    the dough down one more time if you want and wait another hour or two before rolling out.
    The choice is yours. 

4.  Next procedure is to roll out the dough.

COOKS NOTE* 
1.  This dough can also be made in advance and refrigerated for a day or so, or even frozen. Be
     sure to let the dough come to room temperature before using.

DIRECTIONS: ROLLING OUT THE DOUGH FOR FOCCACIA 

1. One mistake most people make when working with dough is not using enough muscle. Dough
   fights back. You push it, it pushes back. Don't be afraid of the dough. It won't bite you
   and you can't really damage it, either. When working with dough, use plenty of flour, but
   don't let it get too dry. It should be fun to work with, not too sticky and not too crumbly.

2. Form it into a flat ball about six to eight inches wide. Using both hands, one on top of the
   other, press from the center outwards on it to start stretching it out, turning the dough a
   bit on each push. You can also pick up the dough and squeeze the edges of it while turning it
   like a steering wheel. This allows the weight of the dough to stretch it.

3. Once the dough is about 1” thick all the way around, use a rolling pin to flatten it out
   to about ¾" thick. I usually run the pin over once or twice, flip the dough over and give
   it a quarter turn and roll it again to make it even.
  
4. Transfer dough to a pizza peel sprinkled with corn meal or place it on a lightly greased
   cookie sheet.

5. Brush the top of your foccacia with a light coating of Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

6. Evenly spoon on a generous layer of pesto,  (I like to use jarred pesto from the supermarket).
   With your finger tips,  go over the foccacia and make noticeable depressions or pock marks over
   the whole surface of the foccacia.  This will give it a moon like surface and the oil and pesto
   will tend to run into the depressions.

7. Take your paper thin slices of potato and in a continuous circle from outside in (see photo),
   Tuck one end of the potato about ¾ of an inch into the dough in a spiral pattern until the top
   of the foccacia is covered.

8. Add the sautéed onion,  then the Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese,  and sea salt.  Then drizzle the
   truffle oil or olive oil over the top and bake in a 400°F oven until the crust is light brown.
   (About 25 minutes,  but check it after 15 minutes) Bake on either a baking stone or on a cookie
   sheet or a pizza pan.

DIRECTIONS: ROLLING OUT THE DOUGH FOR FOCCACIA 

1. The dough for foccacia should be a little wetter than the dough for the pizza and calzone.  

2. When you form or roll out the dough it should be at least a ½ inch thick with the edges a
   thickness of ¾ of an inch. This will keep the olive oil and toppings in place.  It is not
   necessary to puncture the dough as you do for the pizza and calzone dough.  Foccacia is
   usually lighter and airy like bread than the crispier pizza dough.


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