Walnut Focaccia with Gorgonzola

Walnut Focaccia with Gorgonzola

Walnut and Gorgonzola focaccia is a great, flavor packed hors d'oeuvre. It's best served warm or at room temperature.

Ingredients

For the Dough:

  • 3 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1 1/2 cups warm water
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 3/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • Extra-virgin olive oil

For the Topping:

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream or whole milk yogurt
  • 16 ounces Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled, room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme
  • 1 cup California walnuts, chopped
  • 1 cup California walnut halves
  • Extra-virgin olive oil

Directions

  1. Using a stand mixer, stir the yeast into the water in a mixer bowl, let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes. Add the oil and blend with the paddle attachment. Add the flour and salt and continue to blend until combined. Change to the dough hook and knead until smooth and elastic, about 3-4 minutes.
  2. First rise: Lightly oil a large bowl with the olive oil. Place the dough in the bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap. Let rise at room temperature until doubled, 1-1 1/2 hours.
  3. Place the dough on a lightly oiled half sheet pan. Flatten and stretch the dough to cover as much of the pan as possible, then dimple the top with your fingertips to stretch it some more. Cover with a towel and let it relax 10 minutes.
  4. Dimple and stretch the dough more until it covers the bottom of the pan. Cover with a towel and let it rest 25 minutes.
  5. In a bowl, mix together the cream and Gorgonzola cheese. Gently spread the mixture evenly across the dough being careful not to tear the dough. Sprinkle the thyme evenly across the dough. Press the chopped walnuts firmly into the dough. Sprinkle the walnut halves on top and press gently into the dough.
  6. Second rise: Brush the top lightly with olive oil, cover with a towel, and let it rise until well puffed, about 1 hour.
  7. Preheat the oven to 425°F.
  8. Bake 10 minutes. Reduce the heat to 375°F and bake until the topping is golden brown and just starting to bubble, about 12-15 minutes. Unmold immediately. Slice into 3x3 inch bite size pieces.
  9. The focaccia is best served hot but can also be served warm or at room temperature.