Silvia’s Focaccia Pugliese
Recipe from Silvia’s Cucina.
Silvia is a genius with bread. I’ve been inspired by her beautiful Italian breads many times, and when I stumbled across this recipe (through no help from facebook, who hides her lovely recipes from me), I was immediately smitten. When I was invited over to a friend’s house for dinner and she was suggesting we have spaghetti, I thought I MUST make Silvia’s focaccia!
I took it to my friend’s house and we all agreed it was wonderful! I let my friend keep the last piece (as there was only one piece left) and am beginning to regret that decision. I need to make this lovely creation again.
I love what Silvia says about this Focaccia:
Don’t try to sell an Italian a dense, doughy, thick bread, whose resemblance to authentic focaccia is a mere matter of those glistening holes dimpled on top. No, no, to the authentic Italian Focaccia connoisseur, that will not do. Focaccia is not a bread. It is it’s very own creation and you will know you have sunken your teeth into the real thing, when you bite into a feather-light crumb, that comes apart with the slightest involvement of your jaws, leaving you wondering how on earth it is possible to pack so much flavor and such a delightful texture into one humble mouthful.
One warning: (unless you are watching your salt intake) don’t try to make this beautiful bread without the coarse salt flakes for the top … that crunchy salt is an essential contrast against the light soft bread and the soft sweet tomatoes. Also, I made mine with my bread machine. If you want a recipe that doesn’t require a bread machine, go see Silvia’s instructions.
- 2 cups bread flour (or 00 ... I have never found 00 flour here)
- 3/4 cup good quality white whole wheat flour
- 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 Tablespoon yeast
- 3/4 - 1 cup water
- 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil + 1 Tablespoon Italian seasoning
- About 1 cup of cherry tomatoes, halved
- coarse sea salt
- Put all the dough ingredients into your bread machine and put it on the dough setting. Start it up and check the dough in about 5 minutes: is it pulling together into a ball or is much of the flour still on the bottom? If there is lots of flour on the bottom, add a tablespoon of water, wait a couple minutes and see if it starts to roll into a ball. If not add more water, just until there is only a bit of flour on the bottom. Check again at 20 minutes. It should be a nice ball of dough (not soft or saggy, but all held together).
- When the dough is ready, preheat the oven to the lowest heat setting (for me it's 170 F). Spread the dough out onto a large pizza pan or baking sheet (it doesn't have to be round), stretching till you have it about 1/2 inch thick or until the pan is filled, whichever is thicker. Brush the top of the dough lightly with olive oiland cover with a clean towel. Turn OFF the oven, set the covered pan in the oven and let rise for about 40 minutes or until double in size.
- While the dough is rising, mix the olive oil and Italian seasoning. When it's ready, take the pan out of the oven, poke holes in the dough with your (clean) finger, sprinkle with the cherry tomatoes then brush with the olive oil mixture. Sprinkle lightly with coarse sea salt. Set it back in the oven, turn the oven on to 400 F and let bake for 25 - 35 minutes or until lightly golden brown on top.
- Brush will a little more olive oil, if desired. Best served warm. You can make it up ahead of time and reheat in the oven (covered with foil).
RECIPE SOURCE: http://www.sumptuousspoonfuls.com/
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This recipe was shared at Sunday Dinner, Mixer Monday, Mix it Up Monday, Totally Talented Tuesdays, Tuesday’s Table, Cast Party Wednesday, Real Food Friday, Freedom Fridays with All my Bloggy Friends and Gingham & Roses Link Up.