Golden Brown, Crispy Crust…
Focaccia bread is one of our favorites! The simple dough is flavored with olive oil and salt. Before baking it’s also drizzled with more olive oil – gives the baked bread a delicious crispy crust.
I like to sprinkle mine with some rosemary and coarse flaky salt before baking – more of a simple preparation. I’m sure you’ve seen all kinds of highly decorated focaccia loaves on the internet, they’re beautiful! – but personally, I don’t like to add too many toppings – wouldn’t want to interfere with the crust getting nice and crispy.
How Do You Enjoy Your Focaccia?
Focaccia bread is the perfect accompaniment to pretty much any meal! It doesn’t really need butter as it’s rich and delicious with the added olive oil. We love it with grilled meals, caprese salad and pretty much any soup or saucy dish you can dunk it into!
Focaccia Makes Great Panini Sandwiches!
It also makes awesome panini sandwiches. Just slice your focaccia bread in half horizontally, layer in your favorite fillings and pop it in your panini press or griddle. (No need to brush with additional oil – it crisps up beautifully.) Lots of times we’ll eat half the loaf with dinner one night and have panini sandwiches the next night!
How Do You Make Focaccia Bread?
Gather Dry & Wet Ingredients:
If you have a digital kitchen scale, I recommend weighing your flour – as it’s hard to be consistently accurate when measuring with a measuring cup. Stir together your dry ingredients. Add your warm water/oil mixture (not over 110 degrees F.)
Mix, Knead & Rise:
Knead for about 5 minutes on speed 2. It will be a sticky/wet mixture, almost like a thick batter. It won’t form a ball and “clean the sides of the bowl” like some pizza and bread dough recipes. It reminds me a lot of the texture of ciabatta dough.
Let rise either on the counter or for several hours/overnight. Transfer to an oiled pan and let rise again. It will form lots of yummy bubbles.
Rise Again, Top & Bake!
Transfer the dough to a greased baking pan and let rise until doubled. Look at that gorgeous holey, almost lava-like texture with all those gluten strands!
Gently poke your fingers (dampened or oiled hands help with sticking) into the dough before baking, then drizzle with oil and sprinkle on toppings! Pop in the oven and soon you’ll be enjoying your delicious, golden brown and crispy focaccia bread!
- stand mixer
- 569 grams (4 cups) bread flour
- 2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt
- 1 envelope (2 1/4 teaspoons) instant/rapid rise yeast
- 2 cups warm water not over 110 degrees
- 6 tablespoons olive oil divided, plus more for greasing bowl
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary
- flaky or coarse salt for sprinkling optional
Mix and Knead the Dough:
- I use my stand mixer with dough hook to knead this dough. It's a very wet dough, to knead by hand you'd need to keep scraping and turning over the dough in a mixing bowl.
- Combine flour, salt and yeast in mixing bowl. Stir to combine.
- Combine warm water and 2 tablespoons olive oil in a liquid measuring cup. While the mixer is running on low speed, drizzle in the water mixture evenly. Once all is drizzled in, stop and scrape the bowl to help bring the mixture together.
- Knead on speed 2 for 5 minutes. The dough will be wet and sticky (almost like a thick batter), it won't come together into a ball like some pizza and bread doughs. (refer to photos in article.) If it seems thinner than a thick batter, sprinkle in a tablespoon or so of additional flour. Also, if you use all-purpose instead of bread flour, you may need to add more flour.
- Transfer kneaded dough to a greased bowl, cover with greased plastic wrap and set out at room temperature to rise until doubled in size - about 1 hour. You can alternatively, place in the refrigerator for 4 hours - to overnight to rise.
- Grease a 13 x 9 x 2" metal baking pan* with 2 tablespoons olive oil. Use a spatula or bowl scraper to scrape the dough from the bowl into the pan. It will almost pour out and be sticky. With damp/oiled spatula or hands spread the dough out into the pan. Be somewhat gentle so you don't deflate all the air bubbles. Cover with greased plastic wrap and set out at room temperature until it doubles in size (and forms lots of bubbles) - about 1 hour.
- While dough is rising, Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. With greased or damp hands, use your fingers to poke some holes in the dough - it will be sticky and deflate a little bit. Drizzle 2 tablespoons olive oil evenly over the dough - it will pool in the indentations you created with your fingers. Sprinkle with rosemary and coarse/flaky salt**. Bake for about 30 minutes or until deep golden brown.
- Let cool in pan for about 10 minutes, then remove to cutting board to cool about 10 minutes more before cutting. The bread develops a nice crunchy crust, so cutting with a sharp bread knife is recommended.