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This recipe for Tomato Focaccia bread will give you a bready base you can start from and you can change up the toppings and flavors however you like. I’ll walk you through how to make focaccia that makes your family beg for more. And various focaccia toppings that you might like!
Crispy chewy flavorful Focaccia Bread can be topped with a multitude of focaccia toppings to give it even more punch.
Focaccia For Bread Week!
It was BREAD WEEK on the GBBO this week so you know our Bake-Along is making bread.
The three bakes for Bread Week Were:
- Signature Bake: Focaccia Bread
- Technical Bake: Ciabatta Breadsticks with olives and cheese
- Three Dimensional Milk Bread Sculptures
Ciabatta is NO JOKE the dough is HARD to work with, and almost broke me back in 2019 when we made Paul Hollywood’s Ciabatta Bread Recipe. Eventually, I figured it out but wow for a week or two I thought I’d lost my bread-making mojo.
I knew we wanted something a tad bit easier to work with than Ciabatta Breadsticks. And Milk Bread Sculptures didn’t sound fun or enticing. It had to be Focaccia!
How to Make Focaccia
Here are my BEST tips and trick to make working with a sticky dough like ciabatta or focaccia LESS PAINFUL!
I’ve watched hours of Masterclasses and Baking shows featuring sticky bread dough and gleaned some handy tips for working with it.
Additionally, I’ve worked with my fair share of sticky bread doughs (cough cough ciabatta bread!)and there are some tips and tricks that really work. Most of it is trial and error in my little kitchen, and a few tears.
- Use a scale if you can get your hands on one, this is very important to make sure you don’t get too much flour in your bread dough. If you can make ONE improvement in your bread game make it a SCALE!
- If you’re NOT using a scale for flour, loosen and lighten the flour with a spoon before scooping to measure it
- Measure everything carefully
- If you’re adding things to the dough make sure they get evenly distributed, so do it mindfully
- I like to proof very sticky doughs in foodgrade plastic boxes with lids. This can JUST be a Ziploc container, it doesnt have to be ANYTHING fancy. It’s SO easy to pour the dough right out. PLUS you can see when it’s doubled
- Oil your proving container, box or bowl really well so your dough just slides out
- IF you have to put it on the counter for kneading or shaping you generally want to oil the counter not flour it (be aware that ciabatta dough is put ON A FLOURED counter because it’s got that rustic floury bakery thing going on!)
- Oil your hands as well!
- Also oil any tools you have to use
- One of the hallmarks of good focaccia is that it should have big and little holes in it, so when your moving the dough from container to pan don’t knock out ALL THE AIR just move it and let it settle on its own. No need to PUNCH it hard, or at all.
- Focaccia is proved twice, once in bowl or box, and then again in the pan
- Before baking Focaccia Bread you must poke it all over right down to the baking pan, there seems to be many recipes that poke AND THEN OIL, and an equal number that OIL THEN POKE, so choose which one works for you
- THEN add toppings again evenly across the top of the bread
Toppings for Focaccia Bread
There are SO many toppings you can add to the bread. The consensus seems to be, chop and scatter, to make sure you get some in each bite.
- roasted vegetables, thinly sliced
- minced onion, garlic or shallot work with just about anything!
- cheeses, any and all kinds work!
- meats, you can add any kind of meats you like, in Rome we had focaccia with anchovies on it, sublime!
- OLIVES work so well with focaccia, just make sure there are no pits
- Fruits work too like apples or pears, or maybe even plums? Pair with a savory element for best flavor.
- 500 (4 cups minus 2 TBSP)grams bread flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 1/2 tsp rapid rise yeast
- 360ml (1 1/2 cups)warm water
- 150 grams (about 1 cup) grape tomatoes, or cherry tomatoes
- 8 inch piece of rosemary, broken up
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 4 TBSP olive oil, light or regular your preference
- put the flour in the bowl of a stand mixer
- put the salt on one side of the bowl, and the yeast on the other side
- pour water in the bowl
- and stir to combine
- once the ingredients are stirred together let the machine knead for about 4-5 minutes until a smooth wet dough is formed
- oil a container for the dough and scrape the dough in, cover, and let it rest
- once it's doubled
- grease an 8X12X2 baking pan (9X13 would work too!) and gently ease the dough into the pan
- coax it to the edges or close to them anyway
- cover and let rise again for 40 minutes or until the dough comes up the top edge of the pan
- preheat the oven to 425˚
- meanwhile, slice tomatoes in half, or if using bigger tomatoes just cut slices, and break up rosemary into little sprigs
- when the dough has risen almost to the top of your pan poke all over and drizzle with oil
- place cut tomatoes all over the top, press in lightly, scatter with rosemary
- bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until the center is baked
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Amount Per Serving Calories 353Total Fat 6gSaturated Fat 1gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 4gCholesterol 0mgSodium 283mgCarbohydrates 68gFiber 15gSugar 30gProtein 14g
This nutrition information was calculated using a computer program, results may vary.
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