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Caramelized Onion Focaccia with Tomato, Olives and Goat Cheese

Chewy dough, sweet caramelized onion, tomatoes and goat cheese are just a few of the ingredients in this focaccia bread.

 


I love cooking for my mom. It is one of the few times she gets to indulge. My dad is very plain when it comes to food. Meat and potatoes, with only salt and pepper as seasonings. So, I decided to ask her what her favourite dish was. Ya know what? She had a really hard time deciding. Well, that and the fact that most dishes she chose, I had already shared on my blog, LOL. So, I let her think about it a little and she chose a caramelized onion pizza, that I had made last time she was visiting. This is her favourite dish, that I have made for her.


Instead of pizza dough, I decided to go with focaccia dough. Almost the same, but a bit chewier. The remainder of the recipe would stay the same. Sweet caramelized onion, fresh tomatoes, goat cheese and salty kalamata olives, make this a sweet and savoury combo that anyone would love. Especially Mom.





Caramlized Onion, Tomato & Goat Cheese Foccacia


for the dough:

1 pkg (2 1/4 tsp) rapid-rising dry yeast

1 1/4 cup warm water (115- 120 degrees)

2 tbl sugar

3 cups bread flour

1 Tbl salt

1/4 cup olive oil

1/2 tsp dried basil

1/2 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp garlic powder


for the toppings:

2 onions thinly sliced

3 Tbs olive oil

pinch of salt and pepper

2 Tbs balsamic vinegar

2 Tbs brown sugar

2 vine ripe tomatoes, thinly sliced

3 Tbs goat cheese, crumbled

1 C shredded mozzarella

1 tsp fresh thyme leaves

1/2 C kalamata olives, pitted


In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, proof the yeast by combining it with the warm water and sugar. Stir gently to dissolve. Let stand for 5-7 minutes or until foam appears and it bubbles.


Add the oil and flour and mix for 2-3 minutes. Add in the salt and spice blend, and turn the mixer to medium. Mix for 7-8 minutes or until the dough is smooth and elastic. If it’s sticky, add more flour, as necessary. Remove the dough from mixer, put in a greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let double in size (about 45 minutes).


Take a rimmed baking sheet and drizzle with a little olive oil. Using a pastry brush, spread the oil over entire pan.


When the dough has doubled, turn it out onto the prepared pan. Stretch it out evenly distributed, making sure it reaches the corners. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let sit for 15-20 minutes; while the oven is preheating to 400 degrees.

 

Uncover the dough and gently dimple with your fingertips. Drizzle with 2-3 Tbs olive oil. Bake in the middle rack for 15-18 minutes, until almost completely baked.


While dough is baking, heat 3 Tbs of olive oil in a large skillet. Add onions and season with salt and pepper. Cook over med-low heat, until onions begin to soften and turn a nice golden brown colour; about 7-10 minutes. Add in balsamic vinegar and brown sugar. Stir to coat and spread over hot focaccia dough.


Top with mozzarella cheese, tomatoes, goat cheese, olives and fresh thyme. Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees and return dough to oven for 10-15 minutes, until mozzarella has melted. Remove from oven and cut.


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