4 cups of white bread flour
2 tablespoons of sugar
1.5 teaspoon of salt
1 1/4 tablespoon of dry instant yeast
1/4 stick of completely melted butter (not too hot!)
1.75 cup of warm water (approx.)
1 tablespoon of dry instant yeast dissolved in less than 1/4 cup warm water along with a very small pinch of sugar. Let it sit for a couple minutes to foam.
1 cup dry red wine
First, mix all of the dry ingredients together in a big bowl.
Mix the melted butter, yeast/water mixture and warm water with the dry ingredients BUT only use 3/4 of the hot water at first. You may need to add the rest of it in, you may not.
Mix it well before you decide whether you need a little more water. Make a ball out of the dough. You want the dough to be a little tacky. If it’s too sticky, sprinkle in a little more flour.
Knead the dough for a full 5 minutes. Work the entire mass of dough by kneading it on a counter top. It should end up with a uniform texture.
Form the dough into a tight ball – try to stretch a smooth, tight “skin” over it and pinch it at the bottom.
Put about 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a bowl and flip the dough ball in the oil. Leave it in the bowl covered with a damp towel in a warm place.
Preheat the oven to 400F.
When the dough ball is about twice its original size (usually 45 minutes), fold it into itself from the top, re-stretching a “skin” over it.
Wait another 45 minutes and repeat.
Roll the dough flat into a rectangle to fit into a baking sheet (approx 18x 12)
Oil a baking sheet with 3 tablespoons olive oil.
Put the rolled dough onto the cookie sheet, pour about 1 tablespoon olive onto the top of the dough, then season and salt it (kosher salt, ground pepper, cheeses, meats, dill, rosemary, basil or any combination). Gently and evenly “dimple” the surface with your finger tips. Let it sit for 30 minutes.
Put it in the oven on the center rack and bake it until its light/golden brown (about 15-20 minutes).
Let the focaccia cool, then cut into squares or strips to serve.
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