Focaccia Bread that’s studded with fresh rosemary and has golden edges. This rosemary focaccia bread tastes fantastic out of the oven on its own or serve it as a gourmet sandwich for lunch!
In a stand mixer bowl, combine the warm water and instant yeast, let stand and allow the yeast to activate for a few minutes.
Then sprinkle sugar, and half the all-purpose flour. Stir gently with a rubber spatula to combine.
Next, attach the dough hook onto the stand mixer and begin mixing on low speed. Gradually add the remaining half of all-purpose flour, salt, and pour in ½ cup of olive oil.
Once the dough comes together, and the flour begins to fully incorporate, slowly increase the speed to medium-high and knead for 5 to 6 minutes, or until smooth and soft. If the dough is sticky, add in another tablespoon or two of flour. The dough will begin to come together on the dough hook and pull away from the sides of the bowl.
Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl. Cover the bowl loosely with plastic wrap (you don't want to suffocate the dough) or use a clean kitchen towel. Then let it rise, or proof, in a warm place to double in size, for at least 1 hour. Note that it can take more or less time depending on the environment your in. Please see recipe notes for helpful tips with step #4.
Coat a 13” by 18” baking sheet pan with the remaining 1/2 cup olive oil (or you can divide the dough in half and bake in 2 smaller 9” by 13” baking pans).
Place the focaccia dough onto the baking sheet pan and gently begin to press out the dough with your fingertips to fit the size of the pan. Carefully coax and stretch the dough to fit the entire pan. Spread your fingers to make little holes all the way through the dough. This process gives the focaccia its signature look.
Cover the dough with plastic wrap one more time (or clean kitchen towel) and let it rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour. This step may take more or less time depending on your environment. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 425°F.
Brush the focaccia dough with the remaining olive oil and sprinkle liberally with coarse finishing sea salt and the remaining rosemary leaves. Place into the preheated oven and bake for 25 to 30 minutes until golden brown. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly before cutting and serving.
Helpful Tip #1: After you have covered the bowl loosely in plastic wrap draw an outline with a sharpie on the plastic of the dough ball. This tip helps you see when the dough has doubled in size. I do this everytime I make bread so I can see it doubled in size.
Helpful Tip #2: If you are in a colder place, preheat your oven to 180°F or the lowest temperature on your oven for 30 minutes. Then turn your oven off and place the dough bowl in the oven to rise and double in size. I leave the oven door slightly ajar so it doesn’t get too warm and deflate your dough. Another way to proof the dough is to place the bowl of dough outside in the sunlight to rise in size naturally.