ONION FOCACCIA WITH LA QUERCIA IOWA WHITE LARDO
- 4 cups unbleached all-purpose wheat flour
- 1 tablespoon active dry yeast dissolved in 1 & 1/3 cups lukewarm water
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 ½ teaspoons salt
- Yellow onions
- Pitted Kalamata olives (optional)
- 1/2 pound thinly sliced La Quercia Iowa White (lardo)
- Mix flour, yeast & water, oil and salt together well and knead until smooth and elastic. I start the dough in my Kitchen-Aid mixer and then finish the kneading on the counter top.
- Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with a damp cloth or a piece of waxed paper. Let rise until double in bulk – up to two hours.
- Meanwhile, trim two onions and cut them in half vertically. Put cut surface on cutting board and slice thinly. Sweat the onions in one or two tablespoons of olive oil with a pinch of salt until slightly soft. Do not brown! Mix the onions with 1/2 cup Kalamata olives, pitted and cut in half.
- Thinly slice 1/2 pound La Quercia Iowa White. Preheat the oven to 500 degrees.
- Punch down the bread dough and spread into a rectangle on the counter. Scatter the onions and olives on the dough and roll and mix them into the dough. Spread the dough evenly into a large pan (I used a 13 inch circular metal pan with 1 inch sides). Let the dough rise for 30 minutes and bake at 500 degrees for about 20 minutes.
- Immediately upon removing the focaccia from the oven, distribute the sliced Iowa White neatly and evenly across the hot bread. Let it melt in for a few minutes, slice, and serve.
SOFFRITTO OR MIREPOIX
This is a common foundation for savory sauces and soups in many cuisines.
- Onion (finely chopped)
- Celery (finely chopped)
- Carrot (finely chopped)
- Olive Oil
- La Quercia Meat of your choice, diced or shredded: Pancetta, Bacon, Guanciale
- Sautée finely chopped onion, celery, and carrot slowly in olive oil and butter.
- Cook slowly over low heat until the flavors meld and the onions turn very slightly golden brown.
Use as a base for sauces or soups.
- Add herbs: parsley, rosemary, thyme, oregano, bay leaf. Choose herbs based on the final dish.
- Replace the celery with finely chopped fresh fennel.
- Include diced or shredded Pancetta, Bacon, Guanciale, or other La Quercia cured meat.