Hey, guys, it’s Tori here from Fraîche Nutrition with a show-stopper rustic focaccia that will make you look like a HERO in the kitchen! This focaccia takes a bit of time to make but it is WELL worth the effort and truly not difficult!
The slices of potato and fresh rosemary are nestled into these epic little chewy pieces of heaven that are easier to assemble than you would think. It’s the comfort food of all comfort foods … if you ask me!!
It may seem odd to spray your dough with water during the baking process but this step gives you an artisan chewy texture to the focaccia that is truly out of this world. This is a super impressive treat to serve guests all-year round, they’ll think they stepped into a bakery!
- 1 ¼ cup lukewarm water
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoon instant active dry yeast
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for greasing the bowl
- 1 teaspoon sea salt, plus extra for sprinkling
- 2 ½ - 3 cups all-purpose flour (plus extra for kneading the dough)
- Fine mist spray bottle filled with water
- 8 baby potatoes, thinly sliced with a mandolin*
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 4 sprigs fresh rosemary, leaves removed and roughly chopped
- Sea salt
- *If you slice the potatoes in advance be sure to place them in a bowl and fill the bowl to cover the
- potatoes with cold water to prevent them from turning brown. Remove the potatoes from the
- water and dry with a clean dish towel before placing them on top of the focaccia.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the lukewarm water (somewhere between 95°F and 115°F is fine) and sugar until the sugar dissolves. Sprinkle in the yeast and let it sit until the yeast starts to ferment, for approximately 5-10 minutes.
- Add the salt, olive oil, and 2 1/2 cups of the flour. Stir together with a wooden spoon until it is too difficult to stir, transfer the dough onto a well-floured flat surface and knead, pushing the dough using the palms of your hands, for approximately 10 minutes, until the dough looks smooth and stretchy, adding more flour as needed if the dough becomes too sticky. The goal is to have a dough that is stretchy but soft.
- Place the ball of dough in a medium bowl coated with olive oil, cover the bowl with a clean dry dish towel and place in a warm draft-free area for about two hours, until the dough has doubled in size. Punch the dough down. At this point you can either refrigerate the dough overnight (or up to 2 days, covered with plastic wrap and occasionally punched down) or divide the dough into 8 portions (about 3 oz or 85 grams each, depending on how big you want your focaccia). Note, if you refrigerate the dough, make sure to bring the dough to room temperature before baking it.
- Preheat the oven to 450 F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Stretch the balls of dough out with your hands to form individual bases approximately 6” in diameter and place each evenly apart on the baking sheets.
- Arrange the potato slices on top of each focaccia in a random pattern, brush the tops and sides of the focaccia with olive oil (using a pastry brush) and sprinkle with the rosemary and sea salt to taste.
- Using the water bottle on a mist setting, spray each of the focaccia evenly with the water (don’t be shy, this is what makes them chewy) and place the pan in the oven. Spray the focaccia again every 3 minutes three more times and continue to bake until they are golden brown, approximately 15-20 minutes in total.
- Best if served warm from the oven!