Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Spinach Parmesan Fougasse

Although this bread is known by many names throughout the Mediteranian region, the French version from Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur is my favorite. A fougasse is an herbed French bread molded into a beautiful leaf shape.

1 tsp dry yeast
1/2 cup water
2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp Herbes de Provence or
1/4 cup chopped fresh spinach
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tsp sugar

Proof the yeast. Leave for five minutes until the yeast mixture is fluffy. Mix the flour and salt in a large bowl. Make a well in the center of the mixture, then pour in the proofed yeast. Use a wooden spoon to to mix the flour into the dissolved yeast to form a soft paste. Cover the bowl with a dish towel and wait until it rises for about 20 minutes.

Remove the towel and add the oil, parmesan cheese, and herbes de provence or spinach to the flour well. Flour your working surface and knead the dough on it until smooth and elastic for about 10 minutes. Put the dough in an oiled bowl, turning it to coat evenly with the oil, then cover it with a dish towel. Let rise until doubled in size, about 1 1/2 hours. Punch down, then let rest for ten minutes.

On a lightly floured work surface, use a rolling pin to flatten the dough into a tear shape, about fourteen inches long and 3/4 inches thick. Oil your baking sheet or place a piece of silicon lining on it.

Form the dough into a leaf shape, and make diagonal slashes across the dough. Pull out each slash gently with your fingers. Cover the shaped dough, then proof until an imprint of your finger springs back slowly, about 45 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and bake for 40 minutes, until crisp and golden brown. Serve warm.

1 comment:

  1. Nice work on this homemade bread. It looks really pretty!