Foccacia with Antipasti

The day after Vienna we had a day off to recuperate (got back to flat at midnight). We enjoyed a lie in, went food shopping, had some wine and decided to create a three course meal (dessert was a fail) but the starter (this recipe) and the main (herb crusted lamb with Dauphoinse potatoes, which will be posted later on FADHoppers) were fantastic (real winners!)

The idea for the bread came from when we were at Murano and tried their Foccacia. It was some of the best bread I have ever tasted it and I wanted to recreate it. The bread turned out amazing and with the anti pasti – Wow – What a starter! It was our first time making bread too!


Serves: 8-10
Prep Time: 2 hours
Cooking time: 30 minutes

2 tsp active dried yeast
300ml (10fl oz) warm water
500g (1lb 2oz) strong white bread flour
4½ tbsp olive oil plus extra for greasing
8 cherry tomatoes
2 cloves garlic
sea-salt flakes
2 tsp fresh thyme leaves
Parma ham
Any other antipasti dishes you would like

Mix the yeast with 50ml (2fl oz) of the warm water and stir.
Leave for 10 minutes to froth.
Sift the flour into a bowl.
Make a well in the centre
Pour the yeast into the well.
Mix the flour with 3 tbsp of the oil and as much of the water (250ml) to make a into a soft (but not too sticky) dough.
Add more water if needed.
Knead for 10 minutes.
Lightly oil a bowl.
Place the dough in the bowl and cover in oil on all sides.
Cover the bowl with oiled clingfilm.
Leave to rise in a warm place for an hour (the dough should double in size)
Brush a baking tray with olive oil.
Flatten and stretch the dough onto the baking tray.
Cover with the oiled clingfilm.
Leave for a further 30 – 45 minutes.
Using your fingers make dimples all over the dough.
Halve the tomatoes and place in the dimples.
Slice the garlic and place in the dimples.
Drizzle the remaining oil (1½ tbsp) over the top.
Scatter with sea salt and thyme.
Bake in an oven preheated to 200°C for 30 minutes.
Tap the base and if it sounds hollow then it’s ready.
Prepare the rest of the anti pasti.




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