Warm, delicious, versatile, easy to make, plays well with most foods. Comfort food on a rainy afternoon, or for breakfast, as you see fit. Stop buying prepackaged bread, try this yourself. It is fun, and happy, and delicious. I love the aroma of the yeast rising. When I was making this focaccia, my entire staff did not leave the kitchen until we served huge slices. There is a very good side to working at IL Fiorello, Kitchen in the Grove. What is the song…Food, glorious food.
Paired with a favorite topping, this is a very versatile bread. With the instant rise yeast packets, I can walk in the house, make the dough, feed the cats, change my clothes, pour a glass of wine, and the dough will be ready to shape and bake. It really is as easy as that.
If you do not eat all the focaccia (really?), you can save some for sandwiches the next day. Just slice the focaccia in half, and layer delicious treats of cheese, meats, and vegetables. Even kids love this for school lunches.
2 cups AP flour & 2 cups 00 flour (fine grind)
Or 4 cups AP flour
2 packets instant rise yeast (make sure the date is fresh)
2 tsp salt
2 tsp sugar
2 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ cups water (warm) about 165 °
Additional extra virgin olive oil for the bowl and for the topping, about 1/3 cup in total
For the topping
Sea salt or your best coarse salt
A list of alternative toppings follow the recipe.
- Place flour in the bowl of a food processor or Cuisinart
- Add the yeast
- Add the salt
- Add the sugar
- Turn the machine on low and slowly add the warm water.
- Combine until all is well mixed and begins to form a ball.
- Remove from the bowl and knead the dough until it is silky and soft.
- Place in a bowl that is well oiled so the dough will not stick.
- Cover with a towel and place in a warm draft free spot.
- Allow to rise until doubled about 1 hour.
- Punch down and roll out to a sheet pan or cookie pan.
- Cover with a towel and allow to rise again about 30 minutes
- Using your knuckles punch down again, making depressions in the dough.
- Fill the little depressions with olive oil
- Sprinkle with sea salt
- Bake at 375 F ° for about 30 -40 minutes
- Serve warm from the oven with more olive oil.
During rising, place the bowl in the front seat of your warm car. No drafts and a lovely way to make your car smell like fresh risen bread.
In very dry areas, like California, you may need to add extra water to make the dough resilient, and for the flour to come together.
- Sprinkle the warm bread with shaved chocolate and allow the chocolate to melt and become one with the oil.
- Sprinkle with fresh herbs
- Sauté mushrooms
- Sun dried tomatoes
- Grated parmesan
- Add cooked bacon bits to your dough before baking
- Add fresh rosemary to your dough before baking 2-3 teaspoons chopped.
I love a fig and prosciutto topping.
Justin, our Sous Chef’s favorite
Add an apple and cinnamon topping to your bacon focaccia.
Finished with sea salt, more oil, and chocolate. Decadent and delicious