If you’re a (BIG) bread fan like me, you’ll know, that we all tend to have our particular favvvvvvvourite bready friends. The kind that we’d all reach for the moment the bread board comes out (then proceed to give it a friendly dunk it it’s ever so loyal pal, olive oil)
It’s like a chocolate obsession, you’re either a dark, milk or white kinda dude (then those categories branch off into so many categories… I don’t even have enough hairs on my head to classify each)
Anyways… back to bread.
Personally, I’m a ciabatta kinda gal. Give me some butter and jam, and I’m as happy as a duck in water.
Another thing that ma tastebuds go wild for, is a good old herby bread, most beautifully given to us in the form of focaccia. (or in another case this herby cheesy braided loaf I made a while back)
I link it all the way back to my non-existent Italian roots…. so in that case… my complete obsession for all Italian food.
Another thing, if you ever wandered what type of person I was in a restaurant, you’ll just here me saying “do you have free breadbaskets here?”
well, this was mainly going around europe… cause
a) european bread is the fricken bomb dot com
and b) when you have limited moola, bread’s a glorious filler-upper and when it’s free – oh helllll yahhh!!!
So, as we’ve already dabbled in the art of yeast from last posts croissant escapade, we’re gonna have a go at it again with a focaccia!
This flat oven baked, Italian style bread just seems to yell ‘eat me!’, really loudly, in my face.
And I get that, totally understandable, because it’s kinda got a combo of all things good.
Pumpkin, Sun-dried Tomato, Feta, Pine nuts and my friend Sage who subtlety takes the stage (rhyme intended).
Yah feelin’ me? It just all makes sense.
Much like other breads in the yeast family. It’s a game of patience. Just a pinch of patience for focaccia though.
It surprisingly doesn’t take a day as you’d expect, just a little elbow grease to knead, and something to kill an hour or 2 and bobs you uncle!
Then you can invite your uncle bob around, to share you focaccia with! (I don’t have an uncle bob…. shut up Bec)
Another great thing is that you can totally customise your focaccia to the flavours you love!
You can go classic with some sea salt, rosemary and maybe some olives for fun,
Or maybe, shake it up with some cheddar, caramelised onions and thyme! (note to self, make that sometime)
Go wild my friends and have fun with your new bready friend the Focaccia!
PUMPKIN, SUN-DRIED TOMATO & SAGE FOCACCIA
recipe adapted from BBC – FOOD by Paul Hollywood
Makes 1 focaccia loaf (you can easily double the recipe to make 2 as the original recipe does)
250g strong white bread flour
1 tsp salt
1 sachet dried easy blend yeast (7g)
1 tbsp olive oil
200ml cold water
olive oil, for drizzling
fine sea salt
1/2 butternut pumpkin, cut into small pieces
1/4 cup olive oil
140g sundried tomatoes
1/4 cup pinenuts
small bunch fresh sage
salt and pepper to season
1. Place the flour, salt, yeast, olive oil and 150ml of the water into a large bowl. Gently stir with your hand or a wooden spoon to form a dough then knead the dough in the bowl for five minutes, gradually adding the remaining water.
2. Stretch the dough by hand in the bowl, tuck the sides into the centre, turn the bowl 80 degrees and repeat the process for about five minutes.
3. Tip the dough onto an oiled work surface and continue kneading for five more minutes. Return the dough to the bowl, cover and leave to rise until doubled in size.
4. Preheat the oven to 200C. Line a large baking tray with baking paper. Flatten the dough onto a baking sheet, pushing to the corners, then leave to prove for one hour.
5. In the meantime, toss the pumpkin, in the olive oil and seasoning, then spread out on a lined roasting tray, and roast the pumpkin for 15 minutes or until tender.
5. Heat the oven up to 220C. Use your fingers to make deep dimples in the focaccia, pushing them all the way through the dough to the bottom. Drizzle the loaf with oil, and place over the top, pressing in, the roast pumpkin, sun-dried tomatoes, feta, pine nuts and sage. Sprinkle over fine sea salt, then then bake in the oven for 20 minutes. When cooked, drizzle with a little more olive oil and serve hot or warm.
Thanks for stopping by!