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Fontina and Red Pepper-Stuffed Garlic Focaccia

Photography: Becky Luigart-Stayner; Styling: Lydia DeGaris-Pursell
Yield 14 servings (serving size: 1 wedge)

Ingredients

  • 1 package dry yeast (about 2 1/4 teaspoons)
  • 1 cup warm water (100° to 110°)
  • 3 1/4 cups bread flour, divided
  • 1 whole garlic head
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons extravirgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt, divided
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 teaspoon cornmeal
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 3/4 cup chopped bottled roasted red bell peppers
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded fontina cheese

Nutrition Information

  • calories 150
  • caloriesfromfat 20 %
  • fat 3.3 g
  • satfat 1.1 g
  • monofat 1.5 g
  • polyfat 0.5 g
  • protein 5.3 g
  • carbohydrate 24.4 g
  • fiber 1 g
  • cholesterol 5 mg
  • iron 1.6 mg
  • sodium 265 mg
  • calcium 33 mg

How to Make It

  1. Dissolve yeast in water in a large bowl; let stand 5 minutes.

  2. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Add 1 cup flour to yeast mixture, stirring well to combine. Cover and let stand at room temperature 8 hours or overnight to create a sponge (mixture will become very bubbly).

  3. Preheat oven to 350°.

  4. Remove papery skin from garlic head (do not peel or separate cloves). Wrap in foil. Bake at 350° for 1 hour; cool 10 minutes.

  5. Separate cloves; squeeze to extract garlic pulp. Discard skins. Place garlic pulp, 1 tablespoon oil, and 1 teaspoon salt in a small bowl, and mash with a fork until smooth. Stir into sponge.

  6. Add 2 cups flour to the sponge; stir until a soft dough forms. Turn dough out onto a floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic (about 8 minutes); add enough of remaining flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, to prevent dough from sticking to hands (dough will feel tacky).

  7. Place dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning to coat top. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 45 minutes or until doubled in size. (Gently press 2 fingers into dough. If indentation remains, dough has risen enough.)

  8. Punch dough down. Cover and let rest 5 minutes. Divide dough in half; roll each half into a 10-inch round.

  9. Place 1 dough round on a baking sheet sprinkled with cornmeal. Arrange basil over dough, leaving a 1/4-inch border; top with bell peppers. Sprinkle evenly with cheese. Top with other dough round; pinch edges to seal. Lightly coat with cooking spray. Cover and let rise 45 minutes or until dough is doubled in size.

  10. Preheat oven to 400°.

  11. Uncover dough. Make indentations in top of dough with a knife. Gently brush dough with 1 1/2 teaspoons oil, and sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Bake at 400° for 30 minutes or until the focaccia is browned on bottom and sounds hollow when tapped. Remove from pan; cool on a wire rack.