Can you believe it's September already? It seems crazy that in a world where we humans assert so much control over so many things we have zero control when it comes to the seasons. They will change, no matter what we do. The sun will rise and set in time with it's yearly pattern and the days will get shorter before they get longer, so let's not fight it. Maybe I'm telling myself that. I always have trouble getting excited about Fall in Chicago because it's soooooo fleeting here. I feel like it lasts a week and then it's just dark and cold and I feel sad.
The first winter here was the hardest. It felt the darkest. In two weeks we trade in this little apartment with the world's smallest windows and worst view for a high-rise with a patio and massive windows with a view I honestly never thought Nate and I would be able to afford. How did we spring it? Well, the new kitchen is a bit retro. And we don't have dishwasher... We're actually not heart broken over it. Because NATURAL LIGHT!! Also, it's just the two of us (for now). Did I mention we have a PATIO! Like all to ourselves! DREAMS DO COME TRUE. I plan on eating every meal on our patio until the first snowflakes fall and the thought of it is making the anxiety I feel with boxes all around me feel worth it.
But onto this bread! We had this focaccia bread from the Division Street Farmer's Market in Chicago last summer. I knew immediately that I'd need to recreate it. The roast poblanos and corn with sharp cheddar made an incredible combination and because we have about a million of them right now I added cherry tomatoes. I originally wanted to call this "Summer Harvest Focaccia" because that's basically what it is: one big final summer celebration. I love summer so much.
Makes 1 13x18 inch Focaccia
Adapted from: Bread, Toast, Crumbs
For the dough:
3 cups (384g) all-purpose flour
1 cup (128g) white whole wheat flour (or sub more AP flour)
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon instant yeast
2 cups warm water
For the toppings:
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2-3 large poblanos
1 cup corn, fresh or frozen (from about 3 cobbs)
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
3/4 cup sharp cheddar cheese, grated
Make the dough. In a large mixing bowl whisk together the flours, salt, and yeast. Add the warm water and stir until a cohesive dough forms. Cover and set in a warm place for 1 to 1.5 hours until the dough has doubled in size.
Meanwhile, line a baking sheet with parchment paper then top with the poblanos. Set the broiler of your oven to high and broiler the poblanos, until the skin is chard and bubbly. You'll want to check the poblanos every 3-5 minutes, and rotate them often until all sides are evenly charred. Mine cooked for about 15 minutes total. Then remove from the oven and let cool. Once cooled peel the poblano skin from the pepper and discard it along with the seeds. It's easiest to do this in the sink under running water. Finely chop the poblanos then set aside.
When the dough has risen fully, line a 13x18 inch sheet pan with parchment then top with 3 tablespoons of olive oil. Use a two forks to deflate the dough, scape it from the edges of the bowl to form a ball, then transfer it onto the parchment paper. Roll the dough in the oil to coat, then let the dough rest for 20 minutes. Meanwhile heat the oven to 425 degrees F and set the rack to the middle of the oven.
With lightly greased hands, stretch the dough to the width and length of the baking sheet. Then using your fingers press dimples into the dough surface. If the dough stretches back, let it rest for another 5 minutes or so, then stretch again. Top the dough with cheddar, poblanos, corn, and cherry tomatoes. Drizzle with the remaining tablespoon of olive oil and sprinkle with finishing salt. Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden brown on the top.