Focaccia Bread: Recipes for Rosemary, Tomato, Cheese, Garlic, Olive & Basil Focaccia Breads
Focaccia is a flat, savory Italian bread made with yeast and oil and sprinkled with flavorings (such as rosemary, tomato, cheese, garlic, olives and basil). It is delicious eaten on its own or as an accompaniment to soups or salads. Nowadays it has become popular to split and serve focaccia as a sandwich with a variety of salad and cheese or meat fillings.
With these easy recipes you can make focaccia at home and eat it whenever and whichever way you like!
- 2 teaspoons (¼ ounce/7g/1 sachet) dried yeast
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 cup warm water
- 2 2/3 cups all-purpose (plain) flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon cornmeal or semolina
- Olive oil, to grease
- 3 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 1 teaspoon sea salt flakes
1. Combine yeast, sugar and water in a bowl. Stand in a warm, draught-free place for 10 minutes or until foamy.
2. Sift flour and salt into a large mixing bowl. Make a well in the center and pour in yeast mixture and extra virgin olive oil. Use a flat-bladed knife or wooden spoon to stir until combined, then use your hands to bring the dough together in the bowl.
3. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 10 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Brush a large bowl with olive oil to lightly grease. Place dough in bowl and turn to coat in oil. Cover with plastic wrap or a damp tea towel and stand in a warm, draught-free place to prove for 1 hour or until dough doubles in size.
4. Brush a 9 x 13 inch (23 x 33cm) baking tray or roasting pan with olive oil to lightly grease and sprinkle with cornmeal or semolina. Punch down the dough with your fist. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 2 - 3 minutes or until smooth and elastic and dough has returned to its original size. Press dough into tin and brush with a little olive oil. Stand in a warm, draught-free place for 30 minutes or until the dough has doubled in height.
5. Preheat oven to 400° F (200° C). Use your fingertips to press dimples into the dough. Remove rosemary leaves from sprigs in small bunches and poke into dough, spacing evenly. Drizzle or brush with 1 ½ tablespoons oil and sprinkle with sea salt flakes. Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes. Brush with extra olive oil, then bake 5 minutes more. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Alternate recipe and mixing technique
Working the dough
Tomato focaccia: Omit the rosemary. Cut 6 egg tomatoes into ¼ inch (6mm) thick slices and arrange over risen dough on baking tray or roasting pan. Sprinkle with fresh oregano leaves from 6 sprigs. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and 1 teaspoon sugar. Continue as for rosemary focaccia, baking for 10-15 minutes longer.
Cheese focaccia: Omit the rosemary. Add ½ cup finely grated Parmesan cheese and ¼ cup finely chopped chives to mixture in step 2. Continue as for rosemary focaccia.
Cheese and bacon focaccia: Sprinkle ¾ cup grated cheddar cheese, 2 - 3 rashers finely chopped bacon and 1 small, finely sliced, onion over focaccia in step 5. Continue as for rosemary focaccia.
Garlic focaccia: Omit the rosemary and replace with 6 large, thinly sliced, garlic cloves. Continue as for rosemary focaccia.
Olive focaccia: Omit the rosemary. Knead ½ cup sliced pitted Kalamata olives into the flour in step 2. Continue as for rosemary focaccia.
Basil focaccia: Omit the rosemary. Add ¼ cup loosely packed, finely shredded, fresh basil and ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper with the flour in step 2. Continue as for rosemary focaccia.
Another recipe the kids can help with
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