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Decorated Focaccia

Decorate this easy-to-make focaccia with your favorite veggies for a delicious side to your dinner, or serve with olive oil for an appetizer or snack.
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Ingredients

Autolyse

  • 5 3/4 cups + 1 tablespoon (700g) unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 cups (300g) unbleached bread flour (see note 1)
  • 2 3/4 cups + 1 tablespoon (650g) water (80-85˚F/27-29˚F)

Dough

  • 1/3 cup (50g) water (80-85˚F/27-29˚F)
  • 1 (0.25-ounce) package (7g) or 2 1/4 teaspoons Platinum Yeast
  • 1/4 cup + 1 1/2 tablespoons (55g) extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon (15g) fine sea salt

Toppings

  • 6 tablespoons (84g) plus more as needed extra virgin olive oil
  • Vegetables, sliced for decoration (suggestions: mini sweet bell peppers, red onion, heirloom cherry tomatoes, black olives, fresh parsley and dill)

Instructions

  • Make the Autolyse: Add both flours and water to a large bowl or Cambro bucket. Mix with a Danish dough whisk or wooden spoon until the flour and water are completely combined. You may need to use your hands a bit at the end to make sure there is no dry flour left; the dough will be rough and shaggy. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes to 1 hour, until dough is soft and elastic.
  • Make the Dough: Add the yeast to the water, stir to combine. Add yeast mixture, olive oil and salt to the autolyse.
  • Use your hands in a pincer-like manner (see video, linked below) to combine the added ingredients into the autolyse. (Note, you can also use a mixer on low for this process.) The water and oil will slop around for a bit without combining, so be patient. This may take a few minutes to fully combine.
  • When the dough has come together but still a little shaggy, it is time to knead. Knead dough until smooth and elastic. Note, because this is a wet dough, the "slap and fold" method of kneading is ideal (see video, linked below). Shape dough into a tight, round ball.
  • Place dough ball in an oiled bowl, turning to coat all sides of dough with oil. Cover with plastic wrap. Let dough rise at room temperature until doubled in size, about 45-60 minutes. (See note 2 for optional overnight rise.)
  • Prepare ½-sheet pan: Add about 3 tablespoons of olive oil to pan, spreading around to evenly coat pan.
  • Transfer dough to prepared pan. Coat your fingers with olive oil. Use fingertips to dimple and spread the dough evenly in pan as close to the edges as the dough allows. It doesn't need to fill the entire pan; the dough will continue to expand outwards and upwards while it rises. Drizzle the remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil over the top of the dough and gently spread it evenly over dough.
  • Cover and let rise in warm place until dough reaches the top edge of the ½-sheet pan, about 1 hour. (If the dough was in the refrigerator overnight, the rise time may be longer due to the colder dough temperature.)
  • Prepare vegetables: Slice vegetables and place on parchment paper in desired arrangement. (See video for detailed instructions, ideas and tips – linked below.)
  • Preheat oven to 375˚F/190˚C.
  • Once dough has risen, remove plastic wrap. Transfer vegetables to the focaccia, gently pressing them into the dough once in the proper place. When the design is complete, lightly brush olive oil over all the vegetables.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the dough is golden brown and crisp on top and bottom.

Notes

  1. If you don’t have bread flour, you can use all all-purpose flour (8¼ cups/700g total flour). Leave out the remaining cup/50g of water in the dough.
  2. Optional Overnight Rise: In step 5, after dough is in covered bowl, place in refrigerator overnight (do not let it rise to double in size, just place in refrigerator), about 8 hours. This longer rise creates loads of flavor. When ready, continue with step 6.
 
Recipe created by Gesine Prado.

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How to make Decorated Focaccia

Get the step-by-step recipe and shaping video tutorial.

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