Another weakness of ours. It is as easy to have a weakness for Rosemary Focaccia Bread as it is to have it for pizza because they are related. Today I share with you my version; after lots of trial and error, I am pleased with it.
What is Focaccia?
Focaccia is a flat oven-baked Italian bread similar in style and texture to pizza dough. You can use it as a side to many meals or as sandwich bread. In Italy, it is even a snack. It is widespread to go into a bakery and ask for a piece of this delicious bread.
Italians consider Focaccia a Ligurian bread, but there are many different variations in Italy’s regions, which come with various ingredients commonly put on top.
There’s the Focaccia Alla Genovese, Focaccia al Rosmarino (Rosemary Focaccia Bread), Focaccia with Onions, Focaccia with Cheese, the list goes on and on. The ones commonly found even in mainstream supermarkets are cherry tomatoes, onions, or olive ones, which I recommend if you want to make an interesting variation.
As you may know, in Italy, it is imperative to call things by their name, so many Italians would say that this is not a Focaccia, judging by their idea of a Focaccia. I am usually cautious with this, but today I am making an exception:
Simply because, just as with pizza, the versions are countless, so I am taking the liberty to call this: my Focaccia version.
- Sea Salt
- Cane Sugar
- Olive Oil
- Rosemary (optional).
- Semolina (optional)
See quantities in the recipe card.
How to Make the Perfect Focaccia?
Add the yeast and sugar to the warm water and let it rest for ten minutes.
Add the yeast water along with the flour, salt, olive oil, and olive oil to a bowl.
Knead for twenty minutes until you have a soft, firm dough that doesn't stick to your fingers.
Divide the dough and rise while covered with some olive oil and plastic in contact with the dough. (Take a look at the recipe card for at the bottom of the page detailed instructions).
Put the dough in a rectangle baking pan and cover it with some olive oil, coarse salt, and rosemary.
Bake the focaccia for fifteen minutes at 250ºC. Make sure you have pre-heated the oven.
Even amongst Italians, if you go online, you can find tens of thousands of variations, so how can another variation harm the world?
I love Semolina and the sandy, dusty effect it has on bread and pizza. In my opinion, Semolina makes bread, and pizzas have more of a Sourdough texture, which I am all in for.
Tips if New to Baking
Flour type is a big deal when it comes to baking. I learned it the hard way. You can’t use any flour for any bread or baked goods. The zeros define the amount of gluten (protein) a given flour type has, thus what the flour is good for.
The fewer zeros, the more gluten, and gluten is the protein that makes dough rise. Therefore, if you use a multipurpose flour (most likely a 000), it will not grow as a 0 or 00 one.
Flours used for baking cakes are most likely the 0000 type because you don’t want your cake to lose its shape.
There is no better or worse flour; you just need to know what you want it for.
Yeasts are microorganisms from the fungus kingdom. They are alive; they hate salt and love sugar. So when you use salt, make sure it doesn’t come in direct contact with yeast; it will kill it, the same way hot water will. Yeasts like warm water and sweets, don’t we all?
Instead, it would help spread the salt within the flour evenly so the yeast doesn't meet a salt cluster.
Inversely, it is a good idea to dilute dry yeast in warm water with sugar.
Hot water also kills yeast.
So, Can you Freeze focaccia?
Yes, you can! Just freeze it covered in a sealed container for up to 3 months. Then, to defrost it, pre-heat the oven at 300 ºC (150 ºC) for 10 minutes and place the frozen focaccia for 7-10 minutes. Ready!
Without any other tips, here is the Focaccia! Let me know how it goes!
More Italian Inspiration
- Basic Pizza Recipe + all the tips straight from Italy
- Saffron Risotto
- Lemony Spaghetti
- 3 Ingredient Pasta Sauce
- 5 Minute Vegan Pesto
- Vegan Arugula Pesto
Another Favorite Easy Bread: Rosemary Vegan Buns!
If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #ourplantbasedworld on Instagram. Cheers!
Recipe: Rosemary Focaccia Bread
- Dilute the sugar and yeast in the water. Let it rest for 10 minutes. You should see some bubbles on top of the mix.2 tablespoons cane sugar, 0.35 ounce brewer’s yeast, 1 ⅓ cups water
- Meanwhile, mix in a bowl 14 ounces (400 grams) of the 0 Flour, the Semolina, two fine salt tbsp and 2 tbsp of the olive oil.1.1 pounds 0 Flour, 3.5 ounces Semolina, 2 tablespoons sea salt, 5 tablespoons olive oil
- Add the yeast water. Mix it. It should be sticky.
- Take out of the bowl and stretch and fold it for 20 minutes, adding the remaining 3.5 ounces (100 grams) of flour when needed.
- Divide the dough into two pieces.
- Stretch each one into a rectangle, and fold in three parts, like folding a letter.
- Leave the “closing.”
- Place each piece on an oiled pan. Put some olive oil on top of each piece until they are fully covered, and then cover them with plastic wrap. Air is the worst enemy of your dough. It will make a hard crust on it if you leave it uncovered.5 tablespoons olive oil
- Let it rise for 30 minutes close to a warm place in your kitchen or close to a heater.
- Take the raised dough, fold it in thirds again, and give it a rectangle shape to cover your pan.
- Let it rise for a minimum of 1 hours.
- Pre-heat your oven at 480ºF (250ºC).
- Press your fingers on the dough.
- Add the remaining oil, so it covers the “valleys” that your fingers left.
- Add the coarse salt and the rosemary sprigs.2 tablespoons coarse salt, 1 sprig rosemary
- Put any oven-resistant pan on the bottom of the oven with 2 cups of water (this helps to ensure the same temperature is kept in all the ovens if you don’t have an oven with a fan).
- Bake the Focaccia for 15 mins or until golden on top, without opening the oven in the process.
I couldn't find the exact brands of flour and Semolina I use here in Italy, but these two should make it. Important is to have a Manitoba One Zero Flour and a Hard Durum Wheat Semola.
We sometimes take for granted that we have years (or decades) of cooking experience that the average visitor may not. Add to, or remove from, the list below with health and safety tips.
- Cook to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Do not use the same utensils on cooked food, that previously touched raw meat
- Wash hands after touching raw meat
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking point to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove
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