|Basil Pesto Focaccia|
In my last post I showed you how to make a crusty loaf of Gluten Free Olive Bread using Bob’s Red Mill’s gluten free pizza crust mix. Using a mix eliminates the headache and expense of buying and blending countless flours to get a good end result.
This basil pesto focaccia bread is even easier to make than a free form loaf of bread. Beyond the dough being super simple to mix, this one is much easier to shape and bake than the olive bread which incidentally was a very stunning addition to the appetizer table.
When you want something that’s easy to make yet sure to outshine any gluten free boxed cracker you might normally serve at a party, this focaccia bread is the way to go.
It can be customized with countless toppings to fit in with whatever else you might be serving. It’s particularly good with tomatoes and rosemary. Or it can be pushed towards a sweeter direction with pears and gorgonzola.
Really the combinations are endless.
With the holidays on the horizon you can rest assured my pantry is always stocked with several bags of this pizza crust mix. The possibilities are only limited by your imagination.
Basil Pesto Focaccia
Prep time: 2 ½ hours (including 2 hour rise time)
Bake time: 35-40 min
- 1 pkg. pizza crust mix (I used Bob’s Red Mill)
- 1 ½ cups warm water
- 1 yeast package (included with the mix)
- 2 eggs
- 2 tbsp olive oil (for the dough)
- ½ cup basil pesto sauce (I used Mezzetta brand)
- 6 tablespoons olive oil, divided (2 tbsp on the bottom & 4 tbsp on top of the focaccia)
- ½ cup grated locatelli or pecorino romano cheese
- Line a 9x12 inch baking pan with parchment paper drizzle with 2 tbsp olive oil then lightly sprinkle the bottom of the pan with adobo seasoning and set it aside.
- In a large bowl combine the warm water and yeast package and let it stand for about 5 minutes.
- Add the eggs and olive oil and mix until well to combine.
- Add the flour mixture and stir or beat until the wet and dry ingredients are thoroughly combined with no visible dry mixture left.
- Turn the dough ball out onto the prepared pan and spread it evenly over the bottom using a sheet of plastic wrap to press it down without it sticking to your fingers.
- Press shallow divits into the entire surface of the dough with the back of a plastic spoon to form small indentations where the pesto can settle.
- Spread the pesto evenly over the top then drizzle over another 4 tbsp of olive oil then sprinkle over ½ cup of locatelli or pecorino romano cheese
- Prick the entire focaccia with a fork at about 1 inch intervals straight through to the bottom of the pan so that the oil, cheese and pesto can drain through and flavor the dough.
- Let the focaccia rise for 2 hours then bake in a preheated 400ºF (or 205ºC) on the middle rack for 35-40 minutes or until it is a light golden brown.
- Cool on a baking rack to maintain a crusty exterior. Slice and serve.