The Vineyard specializes in gourmet and interesting foods. Culinary experiments are encouraged, if not demanded, especially in the summer. While restaurants strive to new heights, however, so do their grocery bills. So here we’re going to take it back to simplicity.
Priced locally, ingredients are collected and the recipe made with the intention of being accessible to all Islanders. No caviar, no champagne. Included will be suggestions to dress them up or down. However, the base will always be a healthy, nourishing meal.
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Note: Focaccia bread is basic in flavoring. This means you can fill it with virtually anything you want. It pairs well with most dips, or it can be a good soup bread. The ingredients were purchased from Stop & Shop in Vineyard Haven.
This recipe is adapted from King Arthur Baking’s focaccia recipe and recipe of “The New Moosewood Cookbook.”
1½ tsp active dry yeast, $2.59
1 tsp. sugar, $1.59
1 cup warm water
3½ cup flour (plus more for kneading), $1.59
1 tsp. salt
olive oil (for the bowl), $3.49
Dissolve yeast and sugar in the warm water. Add ¼ cup flour and stir with a whisk. Let sit for 10 minutes.
Combine the yeast, remaining flour, and salt. Add the flour ½ cup at a time until the dough is pulling away from the bowl. Knead the dough on a lightly floured counter until the dough is a smooth ball.
Put the dough in a bowl coated with the olive oil, cover with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel, and let rise for 1½ to 2 hours.
After that time, or when it’s doubled in size, punch it down and knead again on a clean, floured surface for 5 to 8 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic.
Roll it into a 10- to 12-inch-diameter circle. Let it rest for about 10 minutes.
Preheat oven to 400°, and grease baking sheet while dough is resting. Transfer the dough to the baking sheet, and brush with olive oil. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes, depending on how soft you want it. It should be lightly browned.
Additions: Dried rosemary
Add 2 to 3 Tbsp. of dried rosemary with the flour. Serve with sun-dried tomatoes and your choice of cheese.
By the numbers
Servings: 4 to 6
Per head (4 servings): $2.32