Schiacciata or Squashed bread

I know you were expecting a picture of the bread weren’t you. Well when I make the bread I will add a picture. For now you will have to  be content with pictures from a perfect fall walk around the ponds. The weather is just gorgeous, warm and dry. The leaves have fallen except for those stubborn oak leaves that will hang on even through the snow.  Meva, Marty and I enjoyed a nice walk through the woods and around the ponds. Meva hunted through the tall grass hoping to see a wood chuck or even a mouse to chase. Although she didn’t find anything there were plenty of good smells.

Tomorrow I plan to make this bread for my son’s visit. It has become a bit of a tradition for us – I clipped the recipe out of the newspaper a couple of years ago and altered it a bit taking out things I knew not every one would enjoy and adding cheese which is great on almost everything(remember this is wisconsin we are cheese heads). This bread is a traditional Italian bread and if I remember correctly made with grapes not cranberries. The dough is similar to a pizza or fochica(ok I need to look up how this is spelled cause the computer is not going to correct it for me)*my son finally came for a visit and we had the bread(I left half plain) and rice and steaks and watched the Green Bay Packers win again.

Schiacciata(*squashed bread*)

1 1/4 cups of warm water

6 TBS olive oil(divided)I cut back on the oil using enough to coat things and brush on the top of the dough so use your own judgement)

1 TBS dry yeast

2 TBS anise seeds(these were in the original recipe but I leave them out)

1 TBS honey

3 – 3 1/2 cups of flour

1/2 TBS salt

cranberry topping

put water, 2 tbs oil, yeast anise and honey in a mixing bowl fitted with a dough hook. mix to blend let sit 2 minutes. add  2 1/2 cups of flour and mix on medium speed for 10 min(add more flour until you have a dough that is only slightly sticky) remove dough from bowl form ball coat with 1 tbs oil place in clean bowl cover with plastic wrap and fridge over night

of course I didn’t read the directions right and let it sit on the counter covered with a towel as it rose and made the cranberries.

cranberry topping

3 cups washed cranberries

1/2 cup of water

1/2 cup sugar

place water and sugar in a sauce pan and bring to a boil throw in cranberries and cook just until they pop. let sit at least one hour so the sugar infuses with the berries. Now I only use about half of the cranberries and save the rest for another batch of bread or to use as a topping for ice cream or cake. And the syrup is yummy mixed with vodka or rum and white soda for an adult cocktail.

coat a pan with 1 tbs oil add dough press out brush dough with remaining 2 tbs of olive oil- drain cranberries put them on dough pressing them in. sprinkle sugar over the dough cover with wrap let sit 1/2 hour while preheating the oven to 400*  I also added some grated sharp white cheddar(about 1/2 cup) and sprinkled 1 tsp coarse salt on top before  baking – 25 min until golden brown. serve warmeven Meva finds this bread irresistible!This is great with turkey day left overs – I hope you enjoy this as much as we enjoyed our walk.

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