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Originally published Thursday, May 9, 2013 at 6:02 AM

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Recipe: Sweet Rhubarb Focaccia

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Makes 1 (9-inch) focaccia

1 ball focaccia dough (see recipe below)

5 ounces thinly sliced rhubarb (about 1½ cups)

1/3 cup sugar

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon Demerara (raw) sugar

1. Heat oven to 450 degrees. In a small bowl, toss rhubarb and sugar. Let stand, stirring occasionally, until fruit releases its juices and sugar dissolves, 20 to 30 minutes.

2. Strain rhubarb juices into a small pot and reserve rhubarb.

3. Simmer juices over moderate heat until thick and syrupy, about three minutes. Pour olive oil into bottom of a 9-by-13-inch baking pan. Pat dough evenly into pan, leaving a small gap between dough and edges of pan. Dough should be about a half-inch thick.

4. Scatter rhubarb over dough; brush generously with syrup. Sprinkle top with Demerara sugar. Bake until focaccia is golden brown, about 20 to 30 minutes.

Focaccia Dough

Makes 3 balls of dough (for 9-inch focaccias)

3¾ teaspoons active dry yeast

¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil, more as needed

1 tablespoon kosher salt

2 teaspoons sugar

4 cups all-purpose flour, more as needed

1 cup whole-wheat flour

1. Place 1½ cups lukewarm water (105 to 115 degrees) in a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Sprinkle yeast over it. Let stand until foamy, about five minutes.

2. Stir oil, salt and sugar into yeast mixture. Stir in all-purpose and whole-wheat flour until a soft dough forms. (You may need to add more all-purpose flour.)

3. Turn dough out onto a floured surface. Knead until it is smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes, or knead in a stand mixer with a dough hook attached for about five minutes. If using a stand mixer, finish dough by hand, on a floured surface, for one minute. Add more all-purpose flour if dough feels very sticky. (You want damp but not unworkable dough.)

4. Oil a large bowl. Place dough in bowl and turn to coat it lightly with oil. Cover bowl with a dish towel. Leave in a warm place until dough has doubled in size, about one hour.

5. Divide dough into three equal-size balls. Tightly wrap in plastic any you are not planning to use right away and freeze. Transfer remaining balls to a baking sheet and cover loosely with a towel. Let rest for 20 to 30 minutes.

Melissa Clark, The New York Times

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