Easy Weeknight Focaccia Bread

Posted on

Focaccia bread, with its golden crust, soft interior, and pockets of flavorful olive oil, is a delightful addition to any meal. Often served alongside salads, soups, or simply enjoyed on its own, this Italian flatbread is surprisingly easy to make at home. This recipe will guide you through the process, transforming you from focaccia novice to baking enthusiast in no time.

Ingredients:

Ridiculously Easy Focaccia Bread - The Café Sucre Farine
Ridiculously Easy Focaccia Bread – The Café Sucre Farine

3 ½ cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup warm water (105°F to 115°F)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • Fresh herbs of your choice (rosemary, thyme, oregano all work well)
  • Flaky sea salt (for sprinkling)

  • Directions:

    1. Activate the Yeast: In a large bowl, combine warm water, yeast, and sugar. Let the mixture sit for 5 minutes, or until the yeast becomes foamy and active. This is a crucial step to ensure your focaccia rises properly.

    2. Mix the Dough: Add 1 cup of flour and 1 tablespoon of olive oil to the yeast mixture. Stir until a shaggy dough begins to form. Gradually incorporate the remaining flour and salt until you have a soft, slightly sticky dough.

    3. Knead the Dough: Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and knead for 5-7 minutes. The dough should become smooth and elastic. If it feels too sticky, add a little bit of flour at a time, but be careful not to over-knead.

    4. First Rise: Lightly coat a large bowl with olive oil. Place the kneaded dough in the bowl, turning it to coat with oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rise in a warm place for 1-2 hours, or until doubled in size.

    5. Preheat and Prepare the Pan: While the dough rises, preheat your oven to 425°F (220°C). Drizzle a baking sheet with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and spread it evenly.

    6. Shape the Dough: Transfer the risen dough onto the prepared baking sheet. Gently stretch and dimple the dough with your fingertips, creating indentations for the olive oil to pool.

    7. Second Rise and Seasoning: Drizzle the top of the dough generously with olive oil. Scatter your chosen fresh herbs and a sprinkle of flaky sea salt over the surface. Let the dough rise for an additional 30 minutes.

    8. Bake: Bake the focaccia bread for 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown and crusty on top.

    9. Cool and Serve: Remove the focaccia from the oven and let it cool slightly on a wire rack before slicing and serving.

    Enjoy your homemade focaccia!

    Nutrition Facts (per slice):

    Calories: 190

  • Fat: 7g
  • Saturated Fat: 1g
  • Carbohydrates: 28g
  • Sugar: 2g
  • Protein: 5g
  • Sodium: 280mg

  • Please note: This is an approximate nutritional value based on a single slice. Values may vary depending on the specific ingredients used.

    Focaccia Frequently Asked Questions:

    1. Can I use instant yeast instead of active dry yeast?

    Absolutely! Substitute 1 ¼ teaspoons of instant yeast for the active dry yeast in this recipe. You won’t need to activate the instant yeast in step 1; simply combine it with the dry ingredients.

    2. What herbs can I use besides rosemary, thyme, and oregano?

    Feel free to experiment with different herb combinations! Sage, basil, and even a pinch of red pepper flakes can add delicious flavor variations to your focaccia.

    3. Can I add other toppings to my focaccia?

    Of course! Chopped olives, sun-dried tomatoes, or caramelized onions make fantastic additions. Get creative and personalize your focaccia to your taste.

    4. My focaccia isn’t rising. What went wrong?

    There could be a few reasons. Make sure the water temperature was warm enough to activate the yeast (around 105°F to 115°F). Also, ensure your dough had enough time to rise in a warm, draft-free location.

    5. How can I store leftover focaccia?