While this is not technically cake, it was sooooo good that I just had to share the recipe. There’s nothing like fresh bread straight out of the oven. Inspired by the BBC’s Great British Bake Off Masterclass this was the first time I had attempted Focaccia. Turned out well!
So here’s the recipe:
This is an amazingly wet dough so don’t get scared – here’s a link to a useful demonstration on kneading with oil by Paul Hollywood. However, your dough will be much wetter than the one in the video.
Serves: 4 Preparation time: 2+ hours Cooking time: 30 mins – 1 hour
500g/1lb 2oz strong white bread flour
2 teaspoons salt
2 x 7g sachets dried easy blend yeast
2 tbsp olive oil
400ml/14fl oz cold water
good olive oil, for drizzling
1. Place the flour, salt, yeast, olive oil and 300ml of the water into a large bowl. Gently stir form a dough.
2. Knead the dough in the bowl for five minutes, gradually adding the remaining water. It will get very wet. Don’t panic, this is correct.
3. Stretch the dough by hand in the bowl, tuck the sides into the centre, turning the bowl. Knead this way for five minutes.
4. Tip the dough onto an oiled work surface and continue kneading for five more minutes. Return the dough to the bowl, cover and leave to rise until doubled in size.
5.Line a large baking tray with baking paper. Your tray will need a little height in the sides to it, don’t use a completely flat one.
6. Take the dough and tip it onto the baking sheet, firmly encouraging it to the corners.
7. Preheat the oven to 220C/425F.
7. Wait. Until the dough proves – which will be about an hour. Here’s a picture. You can see all those lovely air bubbles from the yeast doing its thing, which gives the Focaccia its distinctive texture.
8. Make finger marks in the dough, top with salt, rosemary, sun-dried tomatoes, slivers of garlic etc. Douse liberally with olive oil.
9. Bake for about 35 – 45 mins until done. Drizzle with more olive oil and serve while still warm.