to 8 servings
7-8 oz. Yukon Gold or Russet potato, washed but not peeled
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/4 teaspoons (1 package) active dry yeast
1 1/2 teaspoons table salt
1 cup warm water (105°-115° F)
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (or slightly more)
Coarse sea salt
A couple of teaspoons of minced fresh or dried herbs
1. Place the potato in a medium saucepan and add enough water to cover
it. Add a generous amount of salt (a tablespoon or so). Bring to a boil.
Reduce heat to medium, cover, and simmer until the potato is tender when
pierced with a fork, 20-30 minutes. Remove the potato and let it cool
slightly. Peel and mash the potato as finely as possible with a fork.
2. Put the yeast in a large mixing bowl. Add the warm water to the yeast
in a thin stream; mix together briefly. Let the yeast dissolve in the
water for a few minutes.
3. Add the mashed potato to the yeast mixture and whisk to combine. Mix
in 2 tablespoons of the olive oil.
4. Add in the flour and sprinkle in 1 1/2 teaspoons of table salt. Stir
with a spoon to combine. When dough begins to hold together knead it in
the bowl until the dough is smooth and elastic, 5 to 7 minutes.
5. Coat a medium bowl with oil. Form the dough into a ball and place it
in the bowl, turning over once to lightly coat with oil. Cover dough with
a kitchen towel. Let rise until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.
6. Meanwhile, lightly oil a 9" by 13" pan. When the dough has
finished its first rise, press the dough into the prepared pan, stretching
as necessary. Cover with a kitchen towel and let rise a second time for
about 1 hour.
7. Preheat oven to 425° F (400° F if using a glass pan). In a
small bowl, mix together 1 tablespoon (or a bit more) of olive oil and
8. When the dough has finished its second rise, make a series of small
indentations into the dough with a finger. Brush the oil mixture on to
the top of the focaccia, letting little pools of oil gather in the indentations.
Sprinkle some coarse sea salt over the top.
9. Bake at 425° F (400° F for glass) for 30 to 35 minutes, until
golden brown. Let cool on a rack for 20 minutes before serving. Cut into
squares or narrower strips.
From: Ward Street