Easy Homemade Focaccia Bread is a delicious and easy to make Italian flat bread. Made with olive oil and a salt dough base it makes a great sandwich bread.
If you have never baked bread before or the thought of baking bread seems daunting, try this recipe first. It is sure to make you more confident in working with yeast. Focaccia was one of the first breads, I baked and this recipe always guarantees success.
It is one of the simplest bread to bake and as always, tastes better than shop bought. Focaccia is delicious when served straight out of the oven, split and buttered with a slice of cheese or cut up into sticks and served with a soup.
This really makes a great bread for a sandwich and is so much more creative than just regular sliced bread. I love it filled with cheese and fresh lettuce... so yum. Focaccia stays fresh and soft for about 3 days, so it can be made a day in advance if you want to use it for school or a picnic lunch.
Start by making the dough
Combine all-purpose or cake flour, yeast and sugar together. Make a well in the center and add olive, canola or sunflower oil and warm water. Ensure that the water is warm. If the water is too hot, it will kill the yeast, too cold and the yeast won't be activated.
Slowly add the water. Do not add the water all at once. The amount of water in any bread recipe is just a guide.This will vary depending on the type of flour used. Test the dough rather making it softer than firmer.
Turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes. Kneading the dough well is important as this activates the yeast and helps stretch the gluten in the flour so that the bread can rise well. Stretch the dough by pushing the front half away with the heel of your hand, while holding the back of the dough with the other hand. Then fold the stretched part of the dough back on itself, give it a quarter turn and repeat for about 8 to 10 minutes.
Brush a large bowl with oil and place the dough in the bowl. Rub or brush the surface of the dough with oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Place the dough in a warm place to rise, until doubled in volume, for about 30 to 45 minutes.
Making the topping
Make the topping while the dough is rising. Fry thinly sliced onion until caramalised and soft. I usually cook the onions on low heat soft. Add chopped tomatoes. sprinkle half a teaspoon of mixed herbs into the pot. Fry until all the ingredients cooked. This is a versatile topping recipe, so go ahead and add ingredients you love.
After the dough has risen,grease a large baking sheet and knock down the dough and roll or press out into a circle or rectangular shape. Place the dough onto the greased baking sheet and leave to rise for 15 minutes.
Dimple the surface of the dough with your fingertips and spread over the topping. Crumble feta over the topping if you like as well before it is put into the oven.
Bake for about 15 to 20 minutes.
This recipe makes just one 9x5 inch / 25x15 cm Foccacia. However it is perfectly fine to double the recipe if you want more than one ( I always do...one of these is never enough in my home )
Easy to make and so delicious...give it a try, I know that you will love it too 🙂