Olive Rosemary Focaccia + Wine Pairing
Fresh baked bread is a delicious, intimidating task. Since baking is science, it’s unforgiving and everything has to be just right for it to work. But as far as baking bread from scratch goes, I see focaccia as a humble, dependable bud. This guy won’t do you dirty- he will rise when he should and he will bake up just as he’s supposed to. Throw some olives and herbs on him and he will gratefully accept them. If only all breads were this easy to master..
This focaccia recipe is awesome (if I don’t say so myself) because you can keep the basic bread recipe and change the toppings to anything you’d like. Think roasted garlic and za’atar, caramelized onion and vegan goat cheese, blistered cherry tomatoes and olive oil- the possibilities could go on forever. And you should try it as many ways as you can. I like to serve it super fresh from the oven with some olive oil for dipping. It goes great with soup or pasta, too! You just can’t go wrong with fresh bread.
As far as wine goes, I stuck with one of my favorites that goes well with carbs like pizza, pasta, and obviously bread. Nero d’Avola is a spicy red Italian wine that I first tried with my favorite spicy Italian friends (who are expecting their first baby!). This wine gives me the warm fuzzies since it’s connected to happy memories, so what better to pair it with than some warm fresh bread?
The Nero d’Avola I paired this recipe with is Purato 2016 (Sicily, Italy). I found it in my local grocery store and recommend you try it, too. Since this recipe is bread and the toppings can be changed to your liking, there is a huge range of wines that would go well with this- pleas don’t feel the need to limit yourself. You can certainly use another wine that you like or can find locally.
If you try this recipe, let me know! If you pair yours with a different wine, let me know how it goes! Leave a comment below, or share a picture on instagram with #datkindlife . Stay kind, bbs!
Olive and Rosemary Focaccia
Prep Time: 44 mins-1 hr 15 mins Cook Time: 30 mins Total Time: 1 hr 14 mins- 1 hr 45 mins
· 3 1/3 cups bread flour
· 1 tablespoon course semolina
· ½ ounce active dry yeast (2 x ¼ ounce packets)
· ½ teaspoon salt
· 1 1/3 cups warm water
· ¼ cup olive oil
· 1 cup pitted assorted olives, roughly chopped
· 2 rosemary sprigs, leaves only
· sea salt and fresh black pepper, to taste
1. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, semolina, yeast, and salt. Make a well in the middle of the dry mixture and gradually add in the warm water and olive oil, mixing with a fork. Once a soft dough is formed, use your hands to make it into a ball.
2. On a clean, lightly floured surface, knead the dough ball for about 10 minutes, or until smooth and springy to the touch.
3. Place the elastic dough ball into a large, lightly greased bowl. Cover with a clean dish towel and leave to rise for about 30-60 minutes, or until doubled in size.
4. Preheat oven to 400F.
5. Place the risen dough on a lightly greased 8x10 baking sheet and gently punch down the dough with your fingertips to spread it out evenly to reach the edges of the pan.
6. Press the olives into the dough, so they are partially sticking out. Evenly spread out the rosemary leaves and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
7. Drizzle the dough with a little olive oil and place into preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until golden and cooked all the way through.
8. Slice bread and enjoy warm!