Focaccia with Rosemary and Onion © ejmorris 2002, 2007

This really is the most fabulous Focaccia. It was dead easy to make and I highly recommend it.

July 2007: For thinner focaccia, allow for about an hour's rising time after shaping the bread. For thicker focaccia, allow for about 3 hour's rising time after shaping the bread.

Ingredients Preparation
  1. In a smallish bowl, mix yeast with ¼ c lukewarm water (do the baby's bottle test on your wrist) and malt powder if using. Let stand as you mix the other ingredients or until it bubbles (5 to 10 minutes).
  2. In the meantime, put the room temperature water and oil into a large mixing bowl. Add whole wheat flour ½ c at a time. Stir well with a wooden spoon. Add the salt and only as much unbleached allpurpose flour as you need to make dough pull away from sides of bowl (I use 2 c.) Add the whole wheat flour, salt and 2 cups of the unbleached allpurpose flour (just enough to make dough pull away from sides of bowl). Stir well with a wooden spoon.
  3. Put about ¼ c Sprinkle a small amount of the remaining allpurpose flour on a wooden board. Turn the dough out onto the board. Let the dough rest as you wash and dry your mixing bowl.
  4. Knead the dough to 15 minutes, adding as little extra flour as possible, until the dough is silky smooth and springy. The dough should remain rather soft. (I do this part before late breakfast.)
  5. Put dough in an oiled large bowl, turning the dough to oil all sides of it. Put dough into the clean mixing bowl. (I used to oil the bowl but have found it is completely unnecessary.) Cover bowl with plastic wrap or a damp cloth and let rise for about 1½ hours or until double. (We eat a leisurely breakfast and the dough was risen to double.)
  6. Deflate the dough Oil with sides (it may be called a jelly roll pan). Use your fingers to cover the parchment paper with olive oil (I used the oil from the bowl that I let the dough rise in.)for thicker focaccia pre-shaping: Cut a piece of parchment paper to fit a large jelly-roll tray. Oil the parchment and place the dough in the center. Use your fingers to gently stretch it towards the edges of the pan. It will try to bounce back. This is to be expected. When it's almost to the edges, cover with a clean dish towel and allow to rest on the counter for 30 minutes.

    shaping: Drizzle the top of the dough with half the olive oil and half the water. With wet hands, complete the stretching with your fingers. It will be very easy to pull the dough. Leave lots of indentations in the dough. Scatter the rosemary leaves and onion slices over top of the dough. Drizzle with the remaining olive oil and sprinkle fleur de sel (or coarse seasalt) over top. Splash the rest of the water on and use your fingers to spread it lightly and evenly over top. Leave uncovered and allow to rise on the counter for about 3 hours. (If it seems like it is drying out, spray a little room temperature water over it.)
  7. for thinner focaccia: Make indentations with your fingertips about every 2 inches, dimpling the dough all over. (this was very pleasing to do) Sprinkle fresh rosemary needles into the indentations. (I did this on the non onion half of the bread) Drizzle the dough with 2 Tbsp olive oil. Bake for about (I think I baked it about 40 minutes but checked it after 25 and then every five minutes after that). To ensure that the bottom crust stays crispy, take out of the pan immediately after the bread is done and store it on a rack. Serve warm, cut or broken into pieces.

    thinner focaccia bread is ready to eat at about 1:30pm if started at about 10:00am.