Classic Genovese focaccia made without commercial yeast. I adapted this recipe during the Covid-19 lockdown. Using a mother dough gives the taste an edge commercial yeast just can’t achieve. I do the second rise overnight. This way it will be ready to bake for lunchtime.
Mix 1/2 cup bread flour, 1/4 cup water, and sourdough discard together with a wooden spoon. Add a little flour to the bowl of a stand mixer. Add starter mixture and allow to rise in a warm area, without direct sunlight, until doubled in size, about 2 hours.
Attach dough hook and begin to mix the starter. Add remaining flour, 3 tablespoons oil, and 1 teaspoon salt. Mix in enough of the remaining water until dough pulls from the sides of the bowl and forms a ball; you may not need the full 3/4 cup. Knead dough in the mixer for 5 minutes.
Transfer dough to a work surface and knead by hand for 5 minutes. Score and cover with a cloth. Allow to rise in a draft-free place until doubled in volume, at least 2 hours, and up to overnight.
Lightly oil a shallow 12x16-inch baking pan. Knead dough for 5 minutes. Spread into the pan using your hands. Whisk 1 tablespoon oil and 1 tablespoon water together. Sprinkle a little bit over the focaccia. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in height.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
Push into the focaccia with your fingertips, leaving indentations about 1 1/2 inches apart. Evenly distribute olives and cherry tomatoes on top, pushing them into the dough. Sprinkle rosemary leaves and flaked salt on top. Sprinkle a little more of the oil-water mixture on top.
Bake in the preheated oven until browned and cooked through, 20 to 25 minutes. Drizzle olive oil on top before serving.
Per Serving: 270 calories; protein 6.2g; carbohydrates 34.4g; fat 11.7g; cholesterol 0.1mg; sodium 478.7mg.
The quality of the flour can make a real deal to your bread. Different makers do vary. Great taste or Canadian flours, which are bet higher in gluten, may give you a better rise than standard bread flours – especially if you’re making wholemeal dough , which doesn’t always getting bigger as well as clear bread.
To made this in a breadmaker , add all the ingredients to your breadmaker and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
A dough’s first rising can be make in the fridge 24 hours . This slows down the time it takes to rise to double its size, giving it a deeper flavour. It’s also a great limit , as you can start it night before , then finish it off the next day.