“The recipe was easy to follow and very descriptive. The bread tasted wonderful and was very soft and delicious.” — Brielle, recipe tester, age 10
To Finish and Bake
For the dough: In bowl of stand mixer, whisk together flour, yeast, and sugar. Lock bowl in place and attach paddle to stand mixer.
Add water to mixer bowl, start mixer on low speed, and mix until no dry flour is visible, 3 to 4 minutes (stop mixer every 1 to 2 minutes and use rubber spatula to scrape down sides and bottom of bowl). Stop mixer and let dough sit for 10 minutes.
Add 1½ teaspoons salt to mixer bowl. Start mixer on low speed and mix until combined, about 30 seconds. Increase speed to medium-high and knead dough for 8 minutes. (Dough will look shiny, smooth, and very wet, almost like cake batter.) Stop mixer.
Pour 2 tablespoons oil into large bowl. Use pastry brush to evenly coat sides of bowl with oil. Use rubber spatula to transfer dough to bowl with oil. Use rubber spatula and your hands to flip dough to evenly coat with oil. Wash your hands. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let dough rise until bubbly and nearly tripled in size, 2 to 2½ hours.
To finish and bake: While dough rises, adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 450 degrees. Spray inside bottom and sides of 13-by-9-inch metal baking pan with vegetable oil spray. Pour remaining 2 tablespoons oil into baking pan and use pastry brush to evenly coat pan with oil.
When dough is ready, use rubber spatula to transfer dough to greased baking pan. Use your fingertips to gently pat and stretch dough out to corners of baking pan. (If dough snaps back when you press it to corners of baking pan, cover it with plastic wrap, let it rest for 10 minutes, and try again.)
Let dough sit for 10 minutes. Use fork to lightly poke surface of dough all over about 20 times (this releases any big bubbles in dough). Sprinkle rosemary and remaining 1 teaspoon salt evenly over dough.
Use oven mitts to remove baking pan from oven (ask an adult for help). Place baking pan on cooling rack and let focaccia cool in pan for 15 minutes.
Pizza bianca (which means “white pizza” in Italian) is a popular snack sold at bakeries in Rome. This type of pizza might seem a little strange at first because it isn’t topped with any tomato sauce or cheese, but trust us, it’s delicious! Traditionally, pizza bianca is baked directly on the “floor” (or the stone bottom) of a pizza oven and is lightly charred, bubbly, and mostly flat. For our version, we bake the dough in a baking pan, which makes it puff up like another Italian specialty, focaccia. So think of this recipe as a pizza bianca–focaccia mash-up. Buon appetito!