A focaccia is a flatbread, quite similar to a pizza and then again, quite different from one. The usual focaccia I make has a Parmesan cheese and garlic topping. It makes a wonderful sandwich when sliced horizontally, layered with slices of tomato and roast chicken.
This focaccia recipe is a little different, both in terms of the topping and the thickness. It is a little less than an inch thick and topped with onion slices, garlic, olives, herbs, cherry tomatoes and Gorgonzola cheese. And, of course, olive oil.
It tastes simply delicious, the cheese adding a savoury note and the slightly tart cherry tomatoes providing a perfect foil to the olive oil infused bread.
Do follow this step by step instruction. I used a bread machine to knead the dough, it's a breeze without one either. Please follow your bread maker manufacturer's instructions about the order in which ingredients have to be added.
Gather your ingredients:
|Clockwise from top left: water, extra virgin olive oil, flour, slices of onion and garlic, yeast, salt, sugar, black olive slices, Gorgonzola cheese. dried thyme and dried rosemary|
|And cherry tomatoes|
Pour water and olive oil in the pan of the bread maker
Add in sugar and salt
Sprinkle the flour over
This is how the dough looks about 5 minutes into the mixing process
In the warmth of the bread maker, it takes 40 minutes for the dough to double in size
Take the dough out of the pan, punch it down to expel all the air bubbles. Shape the dough into a ball and place it on a floured worktop
Press the dough out with your fingertips into a flat disc
Use a rolling pin to roll it into a rough 9"x13" rectangle
Leave to prove for 15 minutes, then make indentations all over with the tip of the finger
Cherry tomatoes add a splash of colour. Pour over the olive oil and bake in a hot oven
20 minutes later, sizzling and golden focaccia
Transfer onto a wire rack to cool a little
Slice your golden, warm and delicious focaccia with a really sharp knife.
Gorgonzola and tomato focaccia
220 gm flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp sugar
1 tsp instant yeast
1 tbsp olive oil
150 ml water
1 onion, sliced
6 cloves garlic, sliced
125 gm Gorgonzola cheese
3 tbsp black olive slices
12 cherry tomatoes, halved
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp rosemary
1/4 cup olive oil
If using a bread maker, put the ingredients in as listed.
If you're kneading by hand, sift flour onto a worktop, mix in salt and sugar.
Make a well, pour in lukewarm water, olive oil and sprinkle yeast over the top.
Combine till a rough dough is formed, the dough should be a little sticky.
Knead using the base of your palm. Stretch the dough, roll it back, do a quarter turn and stretch it out again.
As you work the dough, it will tighten up and become soft and springy.
Knead for about 10 minutes, then place in a greased bowl, cover with cling wrap and leave in a warm place till it doubles in size. This may take about 40-60 minutes.
Punch down the dough to expel all the air bubbles, place it on a flour dusted worktop and cover with the bowl for about 10 minutes.
Press the dough with fingertips into a disc, then use a rolling pin to roll it out into a 9"x 13" rectangle.
Grease a baking pan of the same dimension, fit the dough into it and gently pull to fit the corners.
Leave to rise for 15 minutes, then make indentations on the dough with the tip of a finger.
Scatter onion and garlic slices, then the olive slices, followed by the herbs and cheese.
Scatter cherry tomato halves over, drizzle olive oil over it all.
Leave to prove for another 20 minutes, then bake at 200°C for about 20 minutes or till golden.
Remove from the oven, leave to cool for about 10 minutes.
Transfer to a wire rack.
Slice and serve hot.