This is a great appetizer for summer get togethers. It is a delicious way to use fresh herbs and tomatoes from your garden. It is versatile just by switching the topping. Since it is tasty hot or at room temperature, it can be made the day before. If you do not use mozzarella as a topping, you can cut the bread up, and throw it into a plastic bag to take to a potluck. Enjoy!
Herb Foccacia Bread
5 ½ cups of flour
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons sugar
2 packages of active dry yeast
2 teaspoons of garlic powder
4 teaspoons of dried Italian herbs (oregano, basil, and thyme)
black pepper or red pepper flakes to your liking
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups of water
Put all of the dry ingredients in the bowl of an electric mixer and stir together.
Using the dough hook, slowly add the olive oil, followed by the water.
After the dough no longer sticks to the side of the bowl, allow the mixer to knead the dough for a few more minutes.
Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with a damp cloth. Let the dough rise in a warm place for about a half an hour.
Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.
Punch down the dough and divide in into two balls. Grease two cookie sheets. Pull, stretch, and/or pat the dough into a rectangle onto the cookie sheets.
Brush the dough with olive oil. Top with your favorite topping. I use parmesan cheese, fresh basil, and sliced tomatoes. Olives, pesto, garlic, rosemary, crushed red pepper flakes, and mozzarella can also be great toppings.
This bread can be eaten fresh out of the oven, or at room temperature.