Freezing focaccia dough?
Can I freeze focaccia dough, then defrost it for baking? My recipe has 2 rise times, so I planned to get through all of that and freeze. Do-able? Or would it be better to bake it, cool, then freeze for defrosting later? Thanks in advance!
I prefer the texture when I freeze the dough and then bake. Generally, I freeze after the first rise. Then remove the dough the day I want it, let it do the second rise [takes a LONG time] and bake.
Yes. Leavened dough freezes just fine. Let it defrost in the fridge - maybe just takes 1 day - and then it will do the final rise. Those little yeastie beasties handle freezing just fine.
You probably need to do the second rise after it defrosts. I assume that second rise is in the final shape. So after you defrost the dough and then do the last rise and bake. Once the dough is defrosted you could do that last rise in the fridge it will just take longer.
Baked breads freeze really well also. An alternative would be to partly bake it, then freeze, then when defrosted finish the baking to warm it.
Over the years I have found yeast doughs to be amazingly versatile and not finicky at all. Just be observant and patient.
Given a choice, I'd freeze the dough as smtucker suggests over freezing a finished focaccia and trying to defrost it later. As smtucker also points out, the second rise from a frozen dough takes a very long time but when it begins to occur it can move fairly quickly. Only caveat then, when defrosting the dough, you've got to watch it more closely to prevent over proofing during that second rise.
Even if the defrosted dough rises a bit. (S)he can still punch it down and shape it. It won't really matter if there was a bit of a middle rise while the dough defrosted as long as she reshapes the dough for the final proof. The slow fridge rises can really help build some flavor in the dough too.
Thanks, all. We're having lots of guests and won't be home for the 3 1/2 hours the whole recipe takes, so doing the initial rise and freezing will save enough time. It's an easy focaccia recipe, so I'm looking forward to the freeze-after-1st-rise then defrost/rise/bake. Appreciate your expertise!