Our wood oven dried tomatoes give a great burst of flavour to this tomato and rosemary focaccia. Focaccia is very simple to make and one of our favourite breads due to its strong flavour, resulting from using high quality extra virgin olive oil and plenty of coarse sea salt. We tried adapting our Rosemary Focaccia and used more yeast as we had less time to make the bread.
250 grams strong white bread flour
200 ml of luke warm water
6 grams salt (fine sea salt or table salt)
7g packet of dried yeast
20ml of olive oil (we use good quality olive oil for the dough, and some extra virgin olive oil for drizzling before putting in the oven – so have both)
10 springs of fresh rosemary
Wood Oven Dried Tomatoes
- Place flour in a large bowl, and put salt in one edge and yeast in the other. Mix both into the flour in their respective corners with your hand. This is to prevent the salt killing the yeast.
- Add the water and olive oil into the flour. Mix with a wooden spoon. At this stage you should have a wet and sloppy dough. Don’t worry, you haven’t messed it up!
- Chop up the rosemary from around 7 stalks – this sounds like a lot, but it will add flavour. Aim to chop the rosemary so each leaf is around a third of its original size (does not have to be exact, but we say this to demonstrate you don’t need to chop it into a powder).
- Leave the dough to rest for around 30 minutes to one hour. Covered with cling film or a damp towel.
- Once rested, you need to knead the dough. This can be very messy with your fingers, even if well oiled, because the dough is wet. we like to use an oiled dough scraper. The kneading involves putting the dough scraper under the dough, folding it over itself and pressing down. Turn the bowl and repeat. Keep doing this for around 5-10 minutes. The dough should be slightly firmer at this stage, but still relatively wet and sloppy compared to your average bread dough.
- Now leave the dough, again covered, to rise until doubled in size. This can take varying amounts of time depending on the temperature in your house. I leave it upstairs in the room with most sun and it normally takes around 45 minutes. It has taken longer in the past so don’t worry if not done in 45 minutes. If it has risen and you don’t want to move onto the next step yet, put it in the fridge which slows down the yeast.
- Turn the dough out into a well oiled baking tray. We used a 22cm cake tin as a trial. Don’t be tight with the oil – this bread loves oil! After you have flattened the dough out such that it fills the tray, you need to leave the dough, covered, to rise in the tray again for around 30 minutes.
- Now the bread is ready to bake. With oiled fingers make indents all over the bread with your fingers. Scatter rosemary leaves all over the bread, and add in some chopped Wood Oven Dried Tomatoes. Drizzle some extra virgin olive oil, and sprinkle with sea salt (coarse – we used Maldon).
- Bake in a pre heated oven for around 20 minutes at 180C fan, until golden.
- Once we made this bread and the bottom was a bit soggy when we turned it out. we placed on an oven rack instead of tray to finish off for around 5 minutes and it was perfect.