Nothing Less Than A Trusty, Basic, Homemade Focaccia Recipe
Focaccia bread is having as much of a moment as sourdough, and rightly so! This olive oil-enriched, yeasted bread, dusted with flaky salt and baked to golden perfection is so easy to make, it almost feels like cheating. Our focaccia recipe is easy enough for even the most nervous bread-baking beginners—promise!—and the bread that it yields is just so, so good. Rich, tender, fluffy perfection. No store-bought bread will ever compare to the way that bread made by your own two hands will taste. There’s a special magic about homemade bread, and focaccia is one of the very easiest to master. Focaccia goes with everything, too. Homemade focaccia turns even the most basic meal into a special event. Serve your warm-from-the-oven focaccia alongside a simple salad and call it a light summer dinner, or with big bowls of pasta and plenty of good wine for a true Italian countryside feast. You can even use leftovers the next day as the world’s greatest sandwich bread if you have any leftovers (which we never do.)
What is Focaccia?
Focaccia is an Italian bread with ancient roots. Focaccia is sometimes referred to in Italy as pizza genovese, because it is considered an iconic food of Liguria (you haven’t lived until you’ve eaten slabs of acciuga-topped focaccia on a beach in the Cinque Terre), and is particularly associated with Genoa, the capital of Liguria. Focaccia bread is thick and a bit spongy and gloriously olive-oiled, with that golden elixir pooling in the many little dimples that dot the top crust of the bread. You can eat it in its simplest form—our recipe is as basic as can be, just olive oil and salt flavor the simple dough—but it is not uncommon to top it with a few carefully-chosen delicious things. Classic focaccia toppings include:
Fresh rosemary and olives
Thinly sliced tomatoes and anchovies
Thinly sliced onions
Four Simple Pantry Ingredients Are All You Need to Make the Best Focaccia Ever
Here’s the one thing you really need to know about making focaccia at home—make sure your packet of yeast is FRESH. If you’re not sure how old the packet is, toss it and get a new one. Your yeast much be active for this focaccia bread recipe to work. If your yeast is happy, your bread will turn out! Promise. Here are the four main focaccia dough ingredients:
Salt. We call for two kinds in this focaccia recipe—kosher salt for the dough and flaky sea salt for finishing.
Extra virgin olive oil.
How To Make Focaccia Bread
Our focaccia bread recipe could be considered a quick focaccia, because—although it needs a two hour rise—it’s a lot faster start to finish than the increasingly popular no-knead focaccia recipes that are out there. For us, a ten minute kneading session is worth it to save the 8-hour (or overnight) rising time that no-knead recipes call for. Plus, kneading is fun! We’d even call it downright therapeutic. Here’s how to make our easy focaccia bread recipe:
Activate the yeast! Bring some water to 110°F, and sprinkle in the yeast. Let it get happy and active for about 10 minutes. It should be bubbly and expanding.
Begin the focaccia dough. Whisk together the flour and salt, and work the yeast mixture in with your hands just until it comes together. Let it sit for about 10 minutes.
Knead the focaccia dough! Work the dough until smooth, about 10 minutes.
Let the focaccia dough rise for two hours, or until it has doubled in size.
Shape the dough in the pan. Turn the focaccia dough into an oiled pan.
Dimple the focaccia! To make the characteristic focaccia dimples, oil your fingertips and press firmly into the top of the focaccia. As you work, stretch the focaccia dough evenly into the pan, until it reaches all the edges of the pan.
Let the focaccia rise again for 30-60 more minutes.
Bake the focaccia! Drizzle the focaccia dough oil and a dusting of flaky sea salt and bake it until it’s puffed and lightly golden brown.
Homemade Focaccia Bread Makes Every Meal Just A Little Better
Try this easy focaccia recipe, and let us know how you like it, OK? We always want to hear about your kitchen wins, and we especially want to hear about your bread triumphs! Share a photo and tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper so that we can see your stuff! Happy eating!