Well I figured I better get down to the crazy foodie posts that will be probably be just as boring and pointless as everything else on this blog. Haha. So who knows what foccacia is?? I'll tell you. It is an Italian sheet pan bread, traditionally topped with fine chopped herbs and lots of salt. At least the stuff I've made. Its insanely fluffy and soft, and can be very tall, depending on how much yeast you decide to put in it.
Now, I have never been to Italy so I don't know how an Italian Mom would do hers, but what I do know is that this stuff is good and easy. My first job at an Italian restaurant had foccacia that was salty and squat and tender as they come. I never actually made it there, but I ate plenty of it. Unfortunately, it seems to be a prerequisite of the stuff that it is almost rock hard by the next day. But its not a total loss because: CROUTONS!! Another classic Italian thing. Although they apparently come from France. But the truth is foccacia makes great croutons because of its soft interior. If made right foccacia croutons explode in your mouth with tons of flavor. And when I say if made right, I of course mean if made with enough butter and oil, and salt, and spices. Which is usually a lot.
I made a lot of foccacia and croutons at my last job in Vancouver. And they were both pretty awesome, if I may say. I figured out after a few weeks, that leaving it on the first rise for almost an hour made it so soft it was almost unbelievable. Always rise it twice with a punch down in between. And the croutons. Never cook them over 325 and be patient. Use a convection oven if you can. They are their most crunchy at a gorgeous golden color. If you let them get any tint of brown they will start to taste scorched. Always douse them in melted butter! And don't forget the pepper, and either garlic powder or garlic infused olive oil, or both. Rosemary and Thyme are great on foccacia, so you might think of adding some of those.
Off to my work out class. Yet again!!