So excited to share this delicious focaccia recipe! In 2020 my brother got really into baking bread. He made all sorts – your basic beer bread, sourdough, wheat, focaccia, you name it! But I especially loved his focaccia and how it goes with all of our favorite soups this time of year. My siblings and I really love to cook and spent majority of Thanksgiving break standing around the kitchen island and seeing what we could create. I pulled some decorated focaccia ideas from Pinterest and this is what we came up with for Thanksgiving dinner!
The recipe is Ligurian Focaccia from Salt Fat Acid Heat and we followed it exactly as she said. We used wheat flour for this one which is why it looks a little darker but I probably prefer just your standard all purpose flour. The wheat was a tiny bit dense, but still delicious!! The thing about bread is that I think it can look really intimidating but it is actually super easy. It just takes a little more time but is well well worth it in my opinion. I wish I had the dedication to bake bread for my family weekly but maybe one day.
Homemade Focaccia Recipe
for the dough:
2½ cups (600 grams) lukewarm water
½ teaspoon active dry yeast
½ teaspoons (15 grams) honey
5 1/3 cups (800 grams) all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons (18 grams) Diamond Crystal Kosher salt or 1 tablespoon fine sea salt
¼ cup (50 grams) extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for pan and finishing
Flaky salt for finishing
for the brine:
1½ teaspoons (5 grams) Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt
⅓ cup (80 grams) lukewarm water
In a medium bowl, stir together water, yeast, and honey to dissolve. In a very large bowl, whisk flour and salt together to combine and then add yeast mixture and olive oil. Stir with a rubber spatula until just incorporated, then scrape the sides of the bowl clean and cover with plastic wrap. Leave out at room temperature to ferment for 12 to 14 hours until at least doubled in volume. *we let it sit for about 6-8 hours, which I think led to the bread being a little more dense. For those bubbly middles, plan ahead and let your dough sit for longer!
Spread 2 to 3 tablespoons oil evenly onto a 18-by-13 inch (46-by-33 cm) rimmed baking sheet. When dough is ready, use a spatula or your hand to release it from the sides of the bowl and fold it onto itself gently, then pour out onto pan. Pour an additional 2 tablespoons of olive oil over dough and gently spread across. Gently stretch the dough to the edge of the sheet by placing your hands underneath and pulling outward. The dough will shrink a bit, so repeat stretching once or twice over the course of 30 minutes to ensure dough remains stretched.
Dimple the dough by pressing the pads of your first three fingers in at an angle. Make the brine by stirring together salt and water until salt is dissolved. Pour the brine over the dough to fill dimples. Proof focaccia for 45 minutes until the dough is light and bubbly.
Thirty minutes into this final proof, adjust rack to center position and preheat oven to 450°F (235°C). If you have a baking stone, place it on rack. Otherwise, invert another sturdy baking sheet and place on rack. Allow to preheat with the oven until very hot, before proceeding with baking.
Sprinkle focaccia with flaky salt. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes directly on top of stone or inverted pan until bottom crust is crisp and golden brown when checked with a metal spatula. To finish browning top crust, place focaccia on upper rack and bake for 5 to 7 minutes more.
Remove from oven and brush or douse with 2 to 3 tablespoons oil over the whole surface (don’t worry if the olive pools in pockets, it will absorb as it sits). Let cool for 5 minutes, then release focaccia from pan with metal spatula and transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
Serve warm or at room temperature.
To store, wrap in parchment and then keep in an airtight bag or container to preserve texture. Gently toast or reheat any leftover focaccia before serving. Alternatively, wrap tightly to freeze, then defrost and reheat before serving.
We used peppers, tomatoes, shallots, parsley, rosemary, olives and capers to create a little garden on top of our focaccia. Let me tell you, the tomatoes, shallots, olives and capers were DELIGHTFUL. They packed such a sweet and salty flavor into the bread. Highly highly recommend!
You can see a full video of what we did right here.