Click to see a close-up

POOTI'S FOCACCIA BREAD
7 eggs
1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 cup cottage cheese
4 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded (1 cup)
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard (see my comments below)
1 ounce coconut flour (1/4 cup)
1/4 cup unflavored whey protein powder
1/2 teaspoon salt (see my comments below)
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder

Optional Toppings: sesame seeds, olive oil, garlic, parmesan cheese, herbs, poppy seeds, coarse salt, etc.

Spray two 9x9" baking pans with cooking spray then line with parchment paper cut to fit the bottom of the pan. Separate the egg yolks and whites into separate large bowls. Use a metal, not plastic bowl for the egg whites. Plastic is fine for the yolks. Blend the cottage cheese in a small food processor until smooth. Sift the coconut flour into a small bowl and mix with the protein powder, salt, garlic powder and onion powder. Preheat the oven to 325.

Beat the egg whites on high speed until foamy. Add the cream of tartar and beat until the whites are stiff and hold their shape.

Add the cheeses, mustard and dry ingredients to the egg yolks and beat for 3-4 minutes. The mixture will still be a little lumpy. Fold 1/3 of the egg whites into the yolk mixture. Very gently fold in another 1/3 of the egg whites being careful not to deflate them. Add the remaining egg whites and gently fold in, working them as little as possible at this point. There might still be some spots of egg white visible but that's fine. Divide the batter between the two baking pans and spread gently and evenly. Sprinkle the tops with sesame or poppy seeds, herbs or kosher salt, if you like.

Bake for 30-40 minutes at 325 until the bread is golden brown. Rotate the pans after about half the baking time for more even baking. Cool in the pan on a wire rack. After you remove them from the oven, you can brush the tops with some garlic-flavored olive oil and dust lightly with some parmesan cheese. When cool, remove them from the pans and cut each focaccia into four squares. Store in the refrigerator.

Makes 8 servings

Per Serving: 149 Calories; 9g Fat; 13g Protein; 4g Carbohydrate; 1g Dietary Fiber; 3g Net Carbs

This recipe is from my good friend Pooti's Fluffy Chix Cook blog. She shows step-by-step with photos how to make this and also gives you some great ideas for how to use this bread. I think this would make a good base for individual slices of pizza and I plan to try Pooti's grilled cheese sandwich idea tomorrow.

I would only change a couple of things. First, I would cut back on the salt to 1/4 teaspoon. Mine came out slightly too salty for my taste. Second, I think I'd also cut back a little on the mustard. It does help a lot to mask the coconut flour and eggy taste but I thought that the mustard flavor was a little bit strong. I do like the flavor though so I'll probably only leave out about a teaspoon of the mustard next time. Something that I might try next time would be to make a sort of "sling" from parchment paper to line the pans so that the paper also goes up the sides. I only lined the bottoms of mine so I had a heck of a time cleaning the residue from around the edges later. Even though my pans are supposedly nonstick, I had to soak and scrub like crazy to get them clean. This bread is good enough to be worth the bother though and I will make it again. Click the photos to see close-ups.

Click to see a close-up

Here is a picture of some cheesy bread that I made with a slice of the focaccia:

Click to see a close-up

I fried the bread in some butter then topped it with shredded mozzarella and parmesan cheese and a sprinkling of garlic powder. I melted the cheese in the microwave but a toaster oven would also do the job nicely.

UPDATE 5/12/11: Below is my grilled cheese sandwich. I used Muenster cheese. I didn't realize until it was already in the frying pan that the bread is too thick for the heat to get to the center to melt the cheese. So, I set the sandwich on a plate and microwaved it for about 20 seconds or so until the cheese was gooey and then put it back in the frying pan for a little longer. Next time I will microwave it before putting it on the stove. My sandwich was very good but much too salty. I'm thinking that I will omit the salt completely the next time I make this bread. I think that there's enough salt from the cheeses and mustard. Next time I make a grilled cheese sandwich with this bread, I will only use one slice. I could only eat half of the sandwich because the bread is so thick. Click the photo to see a close-up.

Click to see a close-up


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