Riviera Focaccia with Rosemary and Olives


Chef Paulette shares her recipe for Riviera Focaccia.
Published: May. 18, 2022 at 4:33 PM CDT
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2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon active dry yeast

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1 cup warm water

2 tablespoons plus scant 1/4 cup olive oil, divided

2-3 sprigs fresh rosemary, leaves removed, stems discarded

1/2 cup of pitted kalamata olives, or favorite pitted olives, sliced

1/4 teaspoon finishing salt, or regular salt

Combine the flour and salt in a large mixing bowl. Whisk to combine. Add the yeast and sugar to a small mixing bowl, add warm water. Stir once. When yeast puffs up (blooms), add 2 tablespoons olive.

Make a well/hole in the center of the flour mixture. Pour in the wet ingredients. Whisk together gently with a fork until flour is all absorbed and the mixture looks smooth, about 1 minute. Cover dough in bowl with plastic wrap to seal, then cover with a clean kitchen towel. Place in a draft-free spot and let dough to rise until about doubled, about 1-1 ½ hours.

Pour a scant 1/4 cup of olive oil in a quarter-sheet pan, or rimmed jelly roll pan (approximately 9 x 13-inches). Pour out the dough into the pan without folding it, using a spatula to help (dip spatula in the oil — dough will be sticky). Poke your fingers into some of the oil, so the dough won’t stick as you poke down the dough to fill pan. Push it into the corners and try to even out the thickness all around. Poking the dough gives it the characteristic pocked surface of focaccia. Cover the dough with plastic, with sealing it— just on top to cover,, and then kitchen towel. Let rise about 30 minutes more. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

When the dough has risen a second time, discard plastic. Poke your (oiled) fingers to make impressions again, scatter rosemary, olives, and finishing salt on top. Bake focaccia in the hot oven for about 20-30 minutes until deep golden. Allow to cool a few minutes before loosening from pan with a spatula. Cut into squares or strips.

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