This recipe for focaccia comes from Genova and it's absolutely lovely. A toasty and crispy flatbread whose characteristic is the amazing use of an emulsion of water, olive oil, and salt that is poured right before the final rise. This bread will transport you to the countryside of Italy with a single bite.

Focaccia di Genova [Vegan]

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Ingredients

  • 1 pound high-gluten flour (such as type 00)
  • 1 1/4 cup warm water
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon dried baker’s yeast
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/8 cup lukewarm water
  • 1 teaspoon fleur de sel
  • Fresh herbs of your choice: rosemary, thyme, oregano, and/or basil
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Preparation

  1. In a stand-in mixer bowl, combine sugar, yeast, and water and mix it all well.
  2. Pour in the flour and knead for 3 minutes.
  3. Stir in the salt while kneading.
  4. Then knead it for 10 minutes until it becomes a smooth, soft dough.
  5. Remove the dough ball on a greased baking sheet. Cover with parchment paper and place in an oven at 90°F for one hour.
  6. When the dough has doubled in volume, stretch it with your palms (while still on the baking sheet) so as to shape it.
  7. Sprinkle a few grains of fleur de sel and allow the dough to rise again in the oven at 90°F for 20 minutes.
  8. Work the dough very gently with the palms of your hands so that the oil gets everywhere and give the focaccia its final shape (still on the baking sheet).
  9. Let rise again for 10 minutes.
  10. Preheat convection oven to 400°F.
  11. Emulsify the water, olive oil, and the remaining salt.
  12. Poke a hole in the dough with your finger every couple inches and pour the emulsion on the dough, especially in the holes.
  13. Let it rise again for 5 minutes.
  14. Sprinkle the fresh herbs of your choice.
  15. Bake it for 15-20 minutes or until the top of the focaccia is golden brown.
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