A great combination of fruit is the highlight of this golden brown focaccia bread. Fennel adds a distinctive flavor surprise.
1 cup mixed dried fruit such as cherries, golden raisins, apricots
1 tbsp. lemon zest, grated
1 1⁄3 cups milk
1 tbsp. sugar
1 package dry yeast
3 1⁄2 cups flour
3 tbsp. olive oil
2 tsp. salt
1 tbsp. fennel seeds
1. Reconstitute dried fruit in hot water; drain, add zest and reserve.
2. In a saucepan, heat milk until luke warm; add sugar and package of yeast.
3. Pour milk into a large bowl. Stir in 1 cup flour, cover and set aside until it forms a sponge, about 30 min.
4. Transfer sponge to mixer (with a dough hook) and add remaining flour, 1⁄4 cup at a time. Add 2 tbsp. oil and salt and beat until combined. Knead dough until smooth, loose, and elastic.
5. Spread remaining oil inside a large bowl. Allow dough to rise at least 3 hrs. or until doubled in size.
6. Add fennel seeds and dried fruit and knead until completely combined. Roll out into a 13-in. circle and allow dough to rise again 30 min. Bake until golden, about 25 min.