My Rosemary-Garlic Focaccia Bread has a crispy crust, is soft and fluffy, and has a lovely rosemary and garlic flavor. Easily doubled, you can make enough focaccia for everyone!
Making bread can seem like a daunting task. I know, I’ve been there. But I’ve been working on this focaccia recipe for a looong time and I’ve updated it to made it as easy and foolproof as bread can be. Instead of having you knead the dough, I’ve borrowed the folding method from Bon Appetit’s Basically recipe. That change, along with using a combination of all-purpose and extra fine flours, gives you a consistently fluffy and delicious bread with amazing texture, inside and out!
As if that weren’t enough, the top of this focaccia is covered in a delightful mix of rosemary, garlic, and olive oil, to make sure you come back for another piece. And another.
For a thicker bread, with a crispier bottom, you can bake this focaccia in a 12 inch cast iron pan. For a thinner focaccia that can feed a crowd, you can double the recipe and bake it on a half sheet pan. Because sometimes you need more bread. A lot of the time you need more bread 😉
Now quit loafing around! Let’s make bread!
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Rosemary-Garlic Focaccia Bread
- 1 ¼ cups warm water (110°-120° is best) 300 g
- 1 tsp honey
- 1 ⅛ tsp active dry yeast
- 6 tbsp olive oil, divided 82 g
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour 162 g
- 1 1/4 cups extra fine-flour 162 g (also known as 00 flour) If you can't find this, just use more all-purpose flour
- 2 ½ tsp kosher salt (this will also be divided in the recipe, 2 tsp in the dough and 1/2 tsp in the mixture we’ll make for the top of the bread)
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary about 1 ½ tsp when chopped
- 2 cloves garlic
- Flaky sea salt for finishing baked focacia
- Place warm water in a large bowl, along with one teaspoon of honey. Add the yeast and stir gently. Allow to sit for 5-10 minutes, or until the surface looks nice and foamy (this is called “proofing” your yeast.)
- Once the yeast is good and frothy, add flour and 2 tsp salt and mix well with a dough whisk, wooden spoon, or rubber spatula until a shaggy loose dough forms and no big flour pockets remain.
- Transfer your dough to another large bowl that has been coated with 2 tablespoons of your olive oil. Roll the dough in the oil to coat it all over and cover the bowl with a piece of plastic wrap that has been sprayed with a little non-stick spray. Now we're going to allow the dough to rise for 3-4 hours in a warm spot in your kitchen, or until it has doubled in size.If you have a gas oven, an easy way to do this is to turn your oven on to warm for exactly one minute. Turn it off and your oven will be a nice toasty environment that your dough will love. Electric oven? Turn on your oven light before starting the dough making process and leave it on the whole time the dough is rising. It gives a nice gentle warmth to the oven
- OVERNIGHT PROOFING OPTION: After mixing the dough as directed and placing it in your oiled bowl, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator overnight or up to one full day. Allow to come to room temperature for 30 minutes and then carry on with the rest of the recipe as if nothing happened.
- Now we’re going to fold the dough, which is a different technique from the usual “punching down” that you always hear about in bread making. In punching down dough, you are releasing most of the carbon dioxide that the yeast has released in the rise. When folding the dough, the same thing happens, but you are also strengthening the dough by realigning the gluten strands, and you’re creating the air pockets and holes that are traditionally found in the crumb of a focaccia. All this leads to a more tender and airy bread. Yay!So, starting at the twelve o’clock 🕛 position, use two forks to grab the edge of the dough, pull it toward the center, and lightly press it into the rest of the dough. Turn the bowl a quarter turn and do it again, and continue until you’ve done four folds, all the way around the dough. Cover the dough again and allow it to rest for 5 minutes. So the folding technique 2 more times (for a total of three times) 5 minutes apart. Cover the dough again and let it rest 30 minutes while you prepare the topping.
- Strip the rosemary from the stems and chop. Using a fine zester, grate the garlic. Add rosemary, grated garlic, and ½ tsp kosher salt to your final 2 tbsp of olive oil and mix well. Allow to sit while your dough makes its final rise. This will allow the oil to really absorb the flavor of the rosemary and garlic.
- Grease the sides and bottom of a 13X9 inch pan, or 12 inch cast iron pan, with 2 tablespoons of the flavored oil. Transfer your dough to the pan, folded side down. Using your fingertips, gently nudge the dough into the corners. Cover with plastic and allow to rise for 60-90 more minutes, or until the dough fills the dimensions of the pan and doubles in size again.If doubling the recipe, grease a 18X13 inch half sheet pan, place your dough in the pan, cover loosely with plastic wrap and allow to rise. While your dough makes its final rise, preheat your oven to 450° and place the rack in bottom third of the oven.
- Using your hands, spread the rosemary garlic olive oil all over the surface of the dough. With your fingertips, press deeply into the top of the dough, to make the traditional dents found on the surface of focaccia. Pretend you’re playing the focaccia piano 🎶
- Bake for 25-28 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Remove from the oven and brush the top with a little more olive oil and sprinkle with flaky sea salt, if desired.
- Allow to cool for 15 minutes on a wire rack, then remove from the pan and enjoy! It’s perfect dipped in a little olive oil and balsamic vinegar, sliced in half for a delicious sandwich, or just eaten on its own.