Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Focaccia and Open Faced Italian Sammies on Olive Spelt Bread


I have to say....the texture, the aroma, the flavor of this bread is wonderful!

And the possibilities for the dough are endless.....sandwich, rolls, flatbread, pizza, focaccia, etc. etc. etc.

In case you're wondering....or guessing.....

Yep...this is yet another fabulous HBin5 recipe.


If you'd like to find out more, you can check out Michelle's blog over at Big Black Dogs and you'll also find links to the other members and discover the wonderful ways they prepared this dough

Oooooh how I enjoyed this one!

The texture...the crumb....the flavor. (said in a soprano voice)...Wooooonderfuuuull!

The only thing I must caution you about is the wetness of this dough and its tendency to spread (kinda like my....eerrrr.....never mind)

The star ingredients for this particular dough were olives and yogurt


I am really weird about olives. I love black olives and green olives.....from a can. Not a jar. A can! There's something about the brine? I dunno.....I need to talk to an olive expert to find out what it is exactly that I have an issue with.

With that said....I used canned green olives for my dough. And the yogurt? Great addition...talk about a moist crumb! And the crust? Firm yet not chewy. Does that make sense in the world of bread talk?

Oh....I couldn't resist adding a teaspoon or so of powdered garlic. It just seemed to beg for it. (or was that in my head?)

And look what I made!!!


(did you notice that you're only seeing half the loaf? Well...that's because the other end is rather unsightly. It decided to stick to the pizza peel on it's way into the oven and got kinda, I dunno.....tweaked? Not to mention that for some unknown reason I sliced the dough too deeply prior to cooking and ended up with gouges!)


But looks aren't everything... all is good

Now, what will I do with those little lovelies (besides devour them one bite at a time)?

hmmm....I'm thinking Creamy Tomato Soup with little Open Faced Italian Sammies.


For the sammies, I just brushed the slices with a little olive oil and lightly toasted them. Slapped on a few slices of salami and prosciutto, topped with some chopped basil, sliced red onions, tomatoes, arugula and topped with some provolone cheese....pop 'em into a hot oven until the cheese melts and serve.



Easy Peasy

Now the Creamy Tomato Soup is a little more involved

This recipe was inspired by two recipes....one from Michael Chiarello and the other from Bobby Flay

And here's what I came up with

Creamy Roasted Tomato Soup

12 plum tomatoes, quartered
1/2 cup olive oil, divided
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
12 whole garlic cloves, peeled
Salt and Pepper
1 large onion, chopped
1 carrot, diced
2 cups fresh basil
2 cups vegetable stock
1 cup cream

Preheat the oven to 500'F

In a large bowl, combine the tomatoes, 1/4 cup olive oil, balsamic vinegar, garlic, salt and pepper to taste. Spread out onto a cookie sheet and roast for about 35 - 40 minutes.


Meanwhile, in a large saucepan heat up the remaining oil, onions, carrots and some salt. Saute until tender...about 10 minutes. Add the basil leaves and continue sauteing for another minute

Now you get to add all those yummy tomatoes to the mix, along with the vegetable stock and simmer for 10 more minutes.


Add the cream and remove from heat. If you have a handy dandy immersion blender....get that sucker ready for work. Otherwise....use your blender and puree these incredible flavors until smooth and creamy. It is recommended that you start off on a lower setting and gradually increase the speed.

Return to the saucepan and heat through, adding salt and pepper as necessary. If the soup is too thick..add a bit more vegetable stock.

Garnish with some croutons (I made mine from my Pesto Net Bread) and savor the flavor



This soup was rich and flavorful. Something about those roasted tomatoes with the balsamic vinegar....and then you add in the basil? WOW!

Ok....so that was done....and then 3 days later I still had some dough leftover and I was planning on making a spaghetti for dinner.

Light bulb moment!!!

Can you say focaccia?

I love....I mean LOVE making focaccia! It's so simple and versatile and molds to your mood. I grabbed the remaining dough.....worked and rolled it out into a rectangle....poked it with my fingers to make "dimples" and then proceeded to add thinly sliced garlic, a small amount of olive oil, salt, pepper and mozzarella cheese on top....and

Ya...I'm in love.



It was perfect with my spaghetti and chicken dinner. Or by itself.




Printable Version: Creamy Roasted Tomato Soup




22 comments:

  1. The sandwiches sound great especially with the soup. I bet roasting the tomatoes really sets it a step above ordinary tomato soup.

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  2. Love the idea of the open-faced sandwiches! But I think just about anything would have been good on the Olive Bread which is now my favorite..yep it's #1! Loved it.

    And your Roasted Tomato Soup sounds so rich and creamy and delicious!

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  3. Great pictures - it all looks so mouth watering. I've had my bread stick too and it kinda does this weird lopsided thing but often still tastes great. Great job!

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  4. Love your tomato soup. Roasting the tomatoes adds so much extra flavor. I liked this softer dough as focaccia.

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  5. Oh, that foccacia!! And, then you really took it over the top with those open-faced sandwiches. Soo delicious looking.

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  6. Great minds think alike! Loved this bread as foccacia, and the roasted tomato soup was perfect for it.

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  7. YOur focaccia is gorgeous.
    And seriously, I agree with you, looks aren't everything. If the bread is good then that's what matters.

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  8. I adore olive bread, the focaccia must be fantastic!

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  9. Your open-face sammie, luscious-looking soup and foccacia all look so good! Great ideas and thank you for the soup recipe.

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  10. I love a good focaccia and I definitely want to give the tomato soup a go. Yummy!

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  11. Oh man, that all looks wicked good. I've been wanting to do a roasted tomato sauce for a while, but I might do soup instead!

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  12. I agree. This dough is another HBinFive winner! Your soup and sandwiches look so good. Thanks for the soup recipe. Yum!

    BTW, I love your camera tricks! I've tried a few of them myself.

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  13. You did so many wonderful things with this bread, very creative. I love a good tomato soup, your recipe looks like a winner.

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  14. The olive spelt bread really sounds like it was a winner. Your open faced sandwiches are making me drool. They look seriously good:D

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  15. I swear I started to drool looking at your photographs! Your food is beautiful!

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  16. Pass me one of those sammies and bowl of that soup! They both looked so good. Thanks for the soup recipe, I will defintely be making that!

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  17. Wow on the bread. Olives and yogurt are excellent flavors. I love the open faced sandwiches, 10 x yum!

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  18. Those sammies look so good! I love anything with bread and melted cheese! Beautiful foccacia!

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  19. The tomato soup looks and sounds delicious. So easy to prepare and so fresh tasting.

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  20. so in love with bread recently... love this a lot! and the final use for your loaf is ideal!

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  21. Loving those breads--especially the foccacia and the soup looks delicious too. ;-)

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