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Focaccia Art

Why just bake focaccia when you can unleash your inner artist?

I love focaccia bread for its spongy/bouncy nature. Also, it tastes fabulous! Most of the focaccia recipes I found require that you start it 24 hours ahead of time. Um, nope. When I want focaccia, I want it now. I found a wonderful recipe (I cannot even remember where I found it but when I do I will site it....ethics and all).

Normally, I just bake the bread but with the pandemic I've been seeing "bread art." I thought, "I can do that," so I did. Below is the recipe for focaccia with my art thrown in. If I can do it, anyone can. Normally, art for me is a stick figure drawing and even that normally sucks.

1 1/3 c. warm water (about 110 degrees F)

2 t. sugar or honey

1 packet yeast

3.5 c. flour

1/4 c. olive oil

2 t. salt

Other stuff to decorate (I will comment later)

Add the sugar/honey to the water and dissolve. Then add the yeast and let sit for 5 minutes (the yeast should start to bubble and smell like, well, yeast - if that doesn't happen you might have bad or expired yeast - start over).

Add the flour, olive oil and salt and then stir. Turn out onto a floured work surface and knead for about 5 minutes.

Roll into a ball and place in a buttered or oiled or cooking sprayed bowl and turn to coat. Cover and let sit for 45 to one hour or until doubled.

Punch down and then spread into an oiled (or cooking sprayed) baking pan. I like to use a 9"x13" (or so) pan. Spread so it is even. Let sit 20 minutes.

Push your finger to make indentations in the bread - in a 9x13 pan, I usually make about 15 indentations.

This is where you can get creative or not. Some variations:

Brush olive oil over the entire bread (you want to do this regardless of whatever else you put on the bread) and sprinkle with salt and other herbs (like rosemary). Then bake as directed below.

Brush olive oil over the entire bread and then create. For the photo with this post I used a wild ramp pesto that I brushed over the bottom to look like "grass." Then I used the wild ramps to act as stems and added an olive and roasted red peppers to look like the flowers. I topped with sprinkled salt.

Bake at 400 for 20 minutes.


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