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Sun-dried Tomato, Basil, and Mozzarella Focaccia

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup water, warmed to manufacturer’s directions
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons instant dry yeast
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, optional and to taste
  • one 8.5-ounce jar sun-dried tomatoes in olive oil, julienned or sliced thin
  • about 10 fresh torn basil leaves or generous pinches dried basil may be substituted, to taste.
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese.


  1. To the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook (or large mixing bowl and hand-knead), combine flour, water, yeast, oil, sugar, optional salt (remember the tomatoes are salted and so is the cheese), and knead for about 5 minutes, or until dough is soft, smooth, and has come together in a firm mass. If hand-kneading, you may need to knead a few minutes longer. Based brand of yeast used, water temperature will vary. Warm water according to the yeast manufacturer’s recommendations on the packaging. Taking the temperature with a digital thermometer is recommended, but if you’re not, make sure the water is warm, not hot. Err on the cooler rather than hotter side so you don’t kill the yeast.
  2. Turn dough out onto a Silpat-lined countertop or just the bare counter. Roll the dough into a large oval so it’s about 1/2-inch thick and covers about two-thirds of a standard baking sheet.
  3. Place rolled dough onto a Silpat-lined or cooking sprayed baking sheet.
  4. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise for about 25 minutes.
  5. While dough rises, start turning on your Tierra Firme Oven!. Tip – keep baking sheet with rising dough on the near your oven because the yeast will benefit from the carryover heat from it.
  6. After 25 minutes, using your fingertips, create dimples evenly over the surface of the dough. It’s okay to press almost all the way down because the dough will re-inflate quickly.
  7. Evenly top with sun-dried tomatoes and oil. Some of the oil will runoff, that’s okay.
  8. Evenly top with half the torn basil leaves or sprinkle with dried basil.
  9. Evenly top with cheese.
  10. Bake for about 23 to 26 minutes, or until bread is cooked through and the cheese is melted and golden. Baking time will vary based on how juicy or oily your tomatoes are, how much cheese was added, and oven and climate variances. Watch your bread and not the clock and keep changing the position of your sheet so you can cook your focaccia evenly.
  11. Garnish with reserved basil and serve immediately. If during baking your bread rose and it’s quite puffed and you prefer the cosmetic look of flatter bread, use the blunt end of a wooden spoon to create dimples, thereby flattening the bread.
Sun-dried Tomato, Basil, and Mozzarella Focaccia
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