I've been making this bread for quite a few years...even my Italian friends tell me it's delicious. When it's in season, I like to substitute 1 tablespoon minced fresh basil for the dried basil. —Betty Peyret, Pine Grove, California
- 1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
- 1 cup warm water (110° to 115°)
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 2-2/3 to 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add sugar; let stand for 5 minutes. Add 1/4 cup oil, salt and 2 cups flour; beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.
- Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 40 minutes.
- Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface. Pat dough flat; let rest for 5 minutes. Press dough into a greased 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan. Cover and let rise in a warm place for 20-30 minutes or until dough begins to rise.
- With a wooden spoon handle, make indentations in the dough at 1-in. intervals. Brush with 2 tablespoons of the remaining oil. Combine Parmesan cheese, basil, garlic salt and garlic powder; sprinkle over top. Drizzle with remaining oil.
- Bake at 450° for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown. Cut into squares; serve warm. Yield: 2 dozen.
Originally published as Focaccia For A Crowd in Taste of Home's Holiday & Celebrations Cookbook Annual 2002, p44
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