Italian bread doesn't get much better than Focaccia. This rich olive oil bread is crispy on the bottom with pockets of delicious olive oil and topped crispy onions with crunchy sea salt. And just like with pizza you can top it with herbs and vegetables. What's not to love?
Focaccia Made Simple
Bread baking is my passion. The desire to create the perfect bread fuelled my desire to find the ideal oven for bread. Long story short, this desire to bake fuelled the birth of the Charlie Oven.
This recipe is a great bread recipe to learn how to make bread. It is forgiving and a great centrepiece for any party.
500 g Strong Flour
350 g water (room temperature)
1 sachet of fast acting yeast (7g)
10 g fine sea salt
50 g olive oil
1 tbsp Sea Salt Flakes
30g olive oil
1 handful of black olives
Mix the water with the yeast.
In another bowl, mix the fine sea salt and flour together.
Add the yeast water to the dry ingredients. Mix together until it forms a rough dough.
Lightly oil a work surface and tip the dough out onto it.
Knead the dough by hand for 8-10 minutes until the dough becomes elastic. This is a sign of the gluten developing in the dough. Alternatively, pop the ingredients into a food mixer and knead for 6-8 minutes using a dough hook.
When the dough feels elastic, place it into an oiled bowl and cover the top of the dough with oil. Then cover and leave it to sit for 30 minutes to expand. After 30 minutes, gently knock back the dough using your fist. Gently reshape the dough. You can fold it if you like, which means folding the dough over on the sides like folding a jumper.
Add oil to the base of a baking pan (30 cm x 20 cm) with deep sides (a roasting dish works well). Place the dough onto the pan and stretch it out into the corners. Lightly cover in olive oil and film to stop it from drying out. Leave somewhere warm to rise for the second time for 30 minutes.
When the dough has risen again, it's time to dimple the dough to create those lovely pockets to fill up with oil. Gently make a claw with your hand and press it firmly into the dough. Continue until there are dimples all the way across the dough surface. Try not to knock too much air out of the dough.
Prepare the topping by finely slicing the onions add to a bowl with the water and the olive oil.
If you have time, rest for another 30 minutes. If not, just top the bread with the onion mixture spreading it evenly. Then dot the top with olives and sprinkle sea salt flakes on top.
Place directly into a warm oven at 220•C. Place the tray on the top cooking rack position in the Charlie Oven. Bake with the door shut for 15 minutes.
Remove the bread from the oven and add any remaining olive oil. Leave to sit until cool and serve with olive oil and balsamic vinegar dip.