Thursday, December 1, 2011

Pesto Foccacia Bread with Sun Dried Tomatoes

I really LOVE Foccacia Bread... I think I've told the story before of how we would eat it hot out of the oven at the Bakery I worked at. I ran across this recipe in my Food network Magazine for an ad for KitchenAid mixers and it looked delish. I added the Sundried tomatoes and sauteed onions to the batter because I just love sun-dried tomatoes. This was an awesome bread that I cut into triangles to go with my Chicken Milano pasta that I made on Sunday. It would also make a great appetizer, and since Christmas is coming up and that means parties which need appetizers I thought I would post this. Either way you eat it... as an appetizer or side for a pasta dish it's YUMMO!

Pesto Foccacia Bread with Sun Dried Tomatoes
1 package (3/4 ounce) rapid-rise or quick rise yeast
1 cup warm water
1/2 cup diced onion
1/2 cup diced sun-dried tomatoes (I use the dried diced ones that come in a bag that you can find in the produce department)
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 -1/2 cups all-purpose flour
Basil Pesto ( you can use the already prepared pesto in the jar or make your own, I buy the prepared stuff because my basil didn't grow well this year)
Mozzerella Cheese (about 1 to 2 cups)
Olive Oil

Heat about 1 to 2 Tablespoons Olive oil in a small skillet over medium/high heat. Add the diced onion and saute stiring frequently for a few minutes (about 3-5) until the onion becomes translucent. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
In a large mixing bowl whisk together the yeast, sugar and warm water (remember the water should be about luke warm or you will kill your yeast, I test it on my wrist so it's just warm). Set aside for about 5 minutes or until mixture starts to form bubbles on the top.
Next add the flour, salt, sauteed onions, and sun dried tomatoes to the yeast and mix together (I use my kitchen aid mixer that way I don't have to do the work) until the dough forms a ball (dough may be slightly sticky but smooth and elastic as well.)
Oil another bowl with Olive oil and place the dough in that, turning so the top is oiled as well. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside allowing to rise for 30 minutes.
Brush a 9x13 inch baking sheet with oilive oil. Punch down dough and place onto pan, allow to rise again for 30 minutes.
Then press dough to fit pan evenly, I like to dimple the dough with my finger tips at this point and let dough rise again for an additional 30 to 45 minutes or until it has puffed slightly.
Preheat oven to 375.
Spoon Pesto over your dough and spread carefully being careful not to deflate the dough... ad as much as you like, I spread a few Tablespoons over mine so it's a really thin layer. Then bake for about 10 to 12 minutes, then sprinkle the mozzerella cheese over the top and continue to bake another 10 to 12 minutes or until the edges are golden brow and cheese is bubbly and melty. Allow to cool about 3 minutes before cutting into triangles.
                                          I got 12 good size triangles out of this recipe...

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