Herb Focaccia

IMG_3581Focaccia is a favorite bread of mine. Whether used as a soup accompaniment or sandwich base, this rustic-looking flatbread easily elevates any meal from basic to sophisticated. And for the baker, it has excellent versatility. Once you have a good focaccia base, you can adapt it in a million ways. Try it with the traditional olive-oil-and-herb topping, or attempt a more elaborate take with sun-dried tomatoes, olives, cheese, or even roasted grapes. Either way, it’s a bread that’s truly great.IMG_3579.jpgOf course, developing a good gluten-free bread can be a struggle. And my focaccia-making endeavor was no different. While my goal was a light-textured, slightly risen bread with lovely golden top, my first attempt resembled nothing of the sort. Instead, I received a dense, gummy product that was more slab than bread. Disappointing to say the least! But after a few more attempts, multiple tweaks, and several additional purchases of yeast, this winner finally came along.

This recipe provides a light, airy, and deliciously herby gluten-free bread that’s worthy of the “focaccia” name. And if you’re new to the bread-making arena, this is a nice simpler bread to create. I offer some of my suggested flavorings below, but feel free to get creative with these – trying the herbs, or even flavored salts, that you prefer.

So get to it, and happy bread baking!

Herb Focaccia

INGREDIENTS

Bread

  • ¾ cup warm water
  • 1½ teaspoons yeast
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1¼ cup GF Flour Mix
  • ¼ cup tapioca starch
  • 1½ teaspoons xanthan gum
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil

Herb Topping

  • 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
DIRECTIONS
  1. Thoroughly coat an 11×7” pan with cooking spray and dust with tapioca starch.
  2. In a small bowl, dissolve the yeast and sugar in the warm water. Set aside for 5 minutes, until foamy.
  3. In a mixing bowl, combine the GF Flour Mix, tapioca starch, xanthan gum, salt, garlic, rosemary, and oregano. Beat in the eggs, olive oil, and water-yeast mixture, beating on low speed until thoroughly mixed. Turn the mixer speed up to medium and continue beating for 30 seconds, until dough thickens slightly.
  4. Transfer the dough to the prepared pan, using a wet spatula to evenly spread dough to the edges. Cover the dough with a damp towel and place in a warm place to rise for 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
  5. Preheat oven to 350°F and begin preparing the topping. Drizzle the top of dough with olive oil and gently press a wet finger into the dough to create divets. Whisk together the garlic, rosemary, oregano, and salt and sprinkle on top.
  6. Bake the focaccia 25 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and firm. Remove from oven and let the focaccia cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Then transfer the bread to a wire rack to cool completely.

NUTRITION FACTS*
Serving Size: 1 piece (1/8th of loaf)

Calories: 165
Total Fat: 7g
Saturated Fat: 1g
Cholesterol: 47mg
Sodium: 325mg
Total Carbohydrate: 25g
Dietary Fiber: 1g
Sugars: 1g
Protein: 3g

*nutrition facts are estimations

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