Before wesit down to chat and eat this whole wheat focaccia I think you should go out,buy some seedless grapes, come home, roast them with the tiniest amount ofolive oil, and try one. I really, really hope you´ll be as amazed at theirsweet flavor as I was. Almost a candy in the form of a soft grape. Then theconversation about this whole wheat focaccia with roasted grapes and themandatory amount of olive oil it needs, will go smoothly and you´ll be as excited aboutit as I am.
I don´tremember the first time I baked or had focaccia really, but what I do remember withabsolute clarity, is the first time I had a focaccia that forever stayed in mymind, as is explained in this post about a walnut, potato and blue cheeseone.Through theyears I made it so many times, using so many recipes, and most of them wereperfectly amazing, with a lot of olive oil that seeps into the dough and leavesa mate finish on top, and myself with an incredulous look, like where did theolive oil go?
But the flavor wouldn´t be the same if all that fruity oil didn´tpermeate the surface of the dough, it would be more of a regular bread dough with somesort of olive taste. So I liberally drench it in olive oil, the good kind, thestrong kind, because that´s how I like it.
This is thefirst time making a whole wheat version, which includes about half bread flour.It´s difficult to achieve the sponginess of focaccia using only whole wheatflour, but I don´t discard making a few tries, after all I do make a 100% wholewheat bread with a crumb like you wouldn´t believe it, a recipe byBeth Hensperger, whose challah is the first bread I ever made.
On to thegrapes, so sweet and juicy. The first time I roasted strawberries I felt thesame way. I had made a tapioca pudding with coconut milk and decided to roast amango and strawberries after seeing it on another site. Can I roast everythingfrom now on? It really makes things better. It puts me in a very good mood, andisn´t that one of life´s aims, to be happy? Let´s roast then.
WHOLE WHEAT FOCACCIA WITH ROASTED GRAPES Focaccia adaptedfrom TheItalian Baker, by Carol Field
Roasted grapes from No Need to Kneadby Suzanne Dunaway
2 teaspoonsactive dry yeast
1 ½ cupswarm water
1 Tbs oliveoil
2 cupssuperfine whole wheat flour
About 2 ½to 3 cups bread or all-purpose flour
1 ½teaspoons salt
About ½ cupolive oil, to sprinkle before the topping
Roastedgrapes, recipe below
2 or 3 Tbsfresh rosemary
1 cup fetacheese
Freshlyground black pepper
In the bowlof a stand mixer, stir the yeast and water with a pinch of sugar. Let stand 5minutes or until foamy.
Add theolive oil and whole wheat flour. Beat with a wooden spoon until blended andattach to the mixer with the dough hook. Gradually add salt and bread flour, ½cup at a time while mixing at medium low speed. Knead for about 5 minutes andcheck to see if it needs more flour. It should be elastic and just a bitsticky. If it´s pooling too much in the bottom of the pan or too wet add more breadflour, by tablespoons, until you have a velvety dough that doesn´t stick but isnot stiff. I prefer to err on the wet side, since focaccia doesn´t have to beformed into any shape and a too stiff dough will mean a tougher bread.
Coat aclean bowl with olive oil, transfer dough, turn to coat in the oil, cover andlet rise until doubled at room temperature, about 1 to 1 ¼ hours.
Oil two9x13x2 inch baking pans. Preheat oven to 400º.
Transferdough to a barely floured board and divide in two. Gather each half, place itinside the pans and, with oiled hands, press toward the borders until you fillthe whole pan. If the dough resists, wait a few minutes and then stretch againwith your fingers.
Liberallysprinkle with about ¼ cup olive oil each dough, scatter roasted grapes androsemary on top, add sea salt to taste and let rise, loosely covered with plastic wrap, until almost double, 35 to 45 minutes.Dimple the dough with your fingers one last time, and bake for about 20 minutes, untilgolden and top looks dry and crusty.
Let cool onwire rack for 5 minutes, transfer to wooden surface, add crumbled feta cheeseon top, more olive oil and black pepper to taste.
Cut intosquares and serve.
For Roasted Grapes: Preheat oven to 350º. Put about 4 cupsseedless grapes, the sweeter the better, and sprinkle with only 1 teaspoonolive oil, rolling them around to coat. Roast for about 20 to 30 minutes, until they begin to collapse andbrown.
Don´t overroast them at this point because they will continue cooking with the focaccia.