A Savory Focaccia from Artisan Pizza and Flatbread in Five Minutes a Day

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There’s a brand-new book that has just come out by the bestselling authors of Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day and Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day. Have you seen it?

It’s called Artisan Pizza and Flatbread in Five Minutes a Day, and I had the opportunity to review and try a recipe from it! Jeff Hertzberg, M.D. and Zoe Francois have created 100 new easy-to-make recipes for not only pizzas and flatbreads, but also soups, salads, sauces, and spreads, which make great meals with all those pizzas and flatbreads! And for a special finishing touch to your meal, you’ll find some recipes for dessert pizzas and hand pies. The Banana Cream Hand Pie sounds really good and I’m intrigued by the recipe for Chocolate Dough, being the chocolate-lover that I am. I will definitely need to try that out! :)

When I received the book in the mail, I immediately started flipping through it to look at the full-color photos of many of the recipes. I decided to try a focaccia recipe because I really love focaccia and have never made it. It was kind of a challenge for me. Not being an experienced bread-maker, I was wondering if I could really make a delicious focaccia flatbread. Well I’m happy to tell you, “Yes!” I thought the recipe was easy to make and tasted as good or better than any I have ever bought. And it was fun making it!

I definitely will be trying out the pizza recipes, too, especially after watching a pizza-making video on Zoe’s site, Zoe Bakes, and seeing this photo of incredibly tasty-looking pizzas taken by her friends.

Photo by Todd Porter and Diane Cu of White on Rice Couple

As you can see, there are plenty of delicious pizza options to choose from! :)

And so I chose to make focaccia, specifically the Leek, Herbes de Provence, and Garlic Focaccia. It was delicious! You can choose from a variety of dough recipes in the book, and I chose the 100% Whole Wheat Dough, making it with white whole wheat flour. That was another first for me, using white whole wheat flour (which has a less “wheaty” taste than regular whole wheat). This is such a good recipe…I hope you get a chance to try it soon!

LEEK, HERBES DE PROVENCE, AND GARLIC FOCACCIA from Artisan Pizza and Flatbread in Five Minutes a Day

100% Whole Wheat Dough:

Makes enough dough for at least eight flatbreads. The recipe is easily doubled or halved. This dough can be used for pizzas, too!

  • 3 1/2 cups lukewarm water
  • 1 Tablespoon granulated yeast
  • 1  to 1 1/2 Tablespoons Kosher salt
  • 2 Tablespoons sugar, honey, malt powder, or agave syrup (I used honey)
  • 1/8 cup olive oil
  • 7 cups white whole wheat flour (or traditional whole wheat flour)

Mixing and Storing the Dough…

  1. Mix the yeast, salt, sweetener, and olive oil with the water in a 5-quart bowl or a lidded (not airtight) food container.
  2. Mix in the remaining dry ingredients without kneading, using a spoon, a 14-cup capacity food processor with dough attachment, or a heavy-duty stand mixer with paddle. If you’re not using a machine, you may need to use wet hands to incorporate the last bit of flour.
  3. Cover (not airtight), and allow it to rest at room temperature until the dough rises and collapses (or flattens on top), approximately 2 hours.
  4. The dough can be used immediately after its initial rise, though it is easier to handle when cold. Refrigerate in a lidded (not airtight) container and use for flatbread (or pizza) over the next 7 days. Or store the dough for up to 3 weeks in the freezer in 1/2 pound portions. When using frozen dough, thaw it in the refrigerator overnight before use.

The Focaccia Recipe (makes one 10-inch focaccia):

  • 3/4 pound (large orange-size portion) of your homemade dough (refrigerate beforehand for easier handling if desired)
  • 5 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 leek (white part only), halved lengthwise, well rinsed, and thinly sliced crosswise
  • 2 Tablespoons herbes de Provence
  • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon capers
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup white wine (I used white cooking wine)

Prepare the  leeks: In a skilled over medium low heat, add 2 Tablespoons of the olive oil, leeks, herbs, garlic, capers, salt, pepper, and white wine. Cook slowly until the leeks are soft, but not brown. Allow to cool slightly.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Rub 2 Tablespoons of the olive oil in the bottom of a pie tin and set aside (I just had a glass pie plate, so I used that and it worked fine). Dust the surface of the dough with flour and cut off a 3/4-pound (large orange-size) piece. Dust with more flour and quickly shape it into a ball by stretching the surface of the dough around to the bottom on all four sides, rotating the ball a quarter turn as you go (the pizza-making video on Zoe’s site that I mentioned earlier illustrates this technique).

Stretch the focaccia dough: Flatten the dough with your hands and/or a rolling pin on a work surface to produce a 1/2-inch-thick round. Dust with flour to keep the dough from adhering to the surface. Use a dough scraper to unstick the dough as needed, and transfer to the prepared pie plate. Drizzle with 1 Tablespoon olive oil and dimple the surface so the oil won’t run off the top.

Add the toppings: Spread the leek mixture over the dough and allow to rest for 20 minutes. Just before baking, press your fingers into the dough to dimple it throughout; this prevents the toppings from popping off when baking.

Here’s what my focaccia looked like before I put it in the oven:

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Place the pie plate in the oven on the middle rack: Check for doneness in 15 minutes, then turn the focaccia around in the oven if one side is browning faster than the other. It may take up to 5 minutes more in the oven (my total baking time was about 18 minutes).

Remove the focaccia from the pan and allow to cool slightly, preferably on a wire cooling rack. Cut into wedges and serve.

Recipe reprinted with permission from the publisher.

Here’s the fresh-baked focaccia…

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I tasted it while it was still a little warm. Here’s a picture of the first slice…

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All the topping ingredients are so good together. The leek, the herbs, and the garlic cooked in the olive oil and white wine make a wonderful savory topping for this bread!

Have you made focaccia? What do you like to put on yours?

Linked to Foodie Friday.

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10 thoughts on “A Savory Focaccia from Artisan Pizza and Flatbread in Five Minutes a Day

  1. I just bought this book and can’t wait to try some of the recipes. I have their other book and for us home bakers, we really can get artisan breads turn out in our ovens. I’m taking the plunge tonight after drooling over your Focaccia!

    • You’re right, Susan, and there’s something so nice about making your own bread! Glad you are going to be trying one of the recipes out–let me know how it works out for you!

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