Cherry Tomato & Basil Focaccia
This delicious cherry tomato and basil focaccia bread has a soft crumb texture, that is topped with virgin olive oil, cherry tomatoes, fresh basil and coarse sea salt.
Focaccia is great on its own or served with a glass of wine as an accompaniment to a meal.
I love making focaccia as it is so versatile and I can use different flavour toppings every time. Check out some ideas in the variations section of this page.
I love this recipe as it’s so easy and even though it does take a little time it doesn’t disappoint. I use a poolish as it helps to develop the flavours and texture of the bread and if you don’t use it up on the day it will help to preserve it longer. Poolish is a type of dough, made by fermenting flour, water and a very small amount of yeast for a few hours (the night or morning before) prior to incorporating it into the final dough.
If you decide to give this recipe a try, let me know! Leave a comment below and rate it – it’s really helpful to me and the other readers. And don’t forget to take a picture and tag it #thegourmetlarder on Instagram. I love seeing what you come up with! 🙂
- Ease: easy.
- Great for: everyday meals, picnics, breakfast, celebrations.
- Taste: fresh juicy tomatoes and pungent basil roasted on a delicious soft bread.
- Texture: soft crumb baked bread with succulent cherry tomatoes, fresh basil and olive oil.
- Quantity: 12 squares
- Time: 3 hours 10 minutes, includes 2 hours 30 minutes proving.
For this recipe all you need are these ingredients:
- Strong bread or all-purpose flour (BL80)
- Fast action dried yeast
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Sea salt fine and coarse
- Cherry tomatoes
- Fresh basil
Using fresh or dried yeast, click here for further guidance!
TIP: I highly recommend adding salt to your doughs and pastry. Salt helps balance out the sweetness and richness. It also elevates the other ingredients, bring out the best characteristics of any recipe.
WHAT VARIATIONS CAN I MAKE?
This recipe is very versatile and you can have fun trying your own different flavour twists!
Here are a few topping suggestions:
Tomatoes, olives, pesto, onion, sundried tomato, wild garlic, basil, rosemary, chives or Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.
If you experiment, I would love to know how you get on and share it with the other readers.
TIP: If you have ever ended up with dry, dense or crumbly baked goods, it might be because you’re using inaccurate measurements. I highly recommend using metric measurements and a digital scale, rather than cup measurements for example. You will find it much easier, less messy and you will get far better, consistent results weighing your ingredients. 🙂
Serving: one cherry tomato and basil focaccia slice
Nutrition information can vary for a recipe based on factors such as precision of measurements, brands, ingredient freshness, or the source of nutrition data.
I strive to keep the information as accurate as possible but make no warranties regarding its accuracy.
I encourage you to make your own calculations based on the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.
STORAGE AND FREEZING
This Focaccia is best eaten on the day of baking.
Freezing: Focaccia bread is easy to freeze, I like to cut it up into portions, which can be defrosted in a hot oven for 10 minutes. when needed.
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READY TO MAKE YOUR OWN FOCACCIA?
- 200 g water (room temperature)
- 200 ml white bread flour (BL80)
- 2 g fresh yeast (1g fast-action dried yeast)
- All the poolish from before
- 100 g water (room temperature)
- 5 g fresh yeast (2g fast-action dried yeast)
- 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 300 g white bread flour (BL80)
- 2 tsp fine sea salt
- 100 g cherry tomatoes
- 20 leaves fresh basil
- 1 tbsp flaky or rock salt
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- The Poolish: In a medium mixing bowl, add the water, yeast, and flour and mix until well combined.
- Scrape down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
- Cover with cling film and leave to ferment at room temperature for 8 to 10 hours. This is ideal to make prior to going to bed and leaving overnight.
- Dough: To a large mixing bowl or food mixer bowl, add the poolish made the day prior, the water, olive oil, yeast, and the flour.
- Using a food mixer: Gradually mix the ingredients at a low speed, until all the flour leaves the side of the bowl and you have a soft, sticky dough. Form a dough ball.
- Making by hand: Knead the dough on a work surface for 2 to 3 minutes to incorporate the ingredients. The dough will be sticky. (Do not add any flour to the work surface)
- Continue to knead the dough for 5 minutes to work the gluten until you are left with a strong, elastic dough ball.
- First prove: Add a tablespoon of olive oil to a large clean bowl and place the dough into the bowl. Cover with cling film or a damp cloth and leave to proof in a warm place until tripled in size. For me, this usually takes 60 minutes in a warm environment.
- First knockback: Lightly oil your work surface and turn the dough out onto it.
- Stretch out the dough into a 25 x 35cm rectangle.
- With the rectangle facing with the short side on top, take the top 2 corners and pull them down 2/3 of the rectangle.
- Then take the bottom 2 corners and fold over the top of the dough to the top.
- Turn the dough 90° and fold the right side over 2/3 of the dough and then the left side over the top of the dough. Turn over the dough.
- Place the dough back into the bowl and cover with cling film.
- Second prove: Prove the dough this time for 60 minutes at room temperature.
- Second knockback: Repeat the process as you did in the first knockback.
- Third prove: Prove the dough this time for 30 minutes at room temperature.
- Shaping: Onto a large chopping board place a piece of parchment paper and coat with a little olive oil.
- Third knockback: Repeat the process as you have for the previous knockbacks. In the final stage when the dough has been folded and turned over, place the dough onto the parchment paper and lightly press into a 20 cm x 30 cm rectangle.
- Loosely cover the dough with plastic wrap and leave to prove for a final 30 minutes.
- Preheating: Place a baking tray in the middle of the oven and preheat the oven to 230°C fan / 480°F / Gas 10
- Toppings: Use your fingertips to press the surface of the focaccia to expand the focaccia into a 25 x 35cm rectangle.
- Top with your favourite ingredients (see notes for ideas) and then finally sprinkle the top of the focaccia with the coarse sea salt and drizzle some olive oil over the top.
- Baking: Pull the parchment paper with the focaccia onto the baking tray in the oven. Bake the focaccia for 20 to 25 minutes.
- Remove the focaccia from the oven and place it on a wire cooling rack.
Notes & Tips
PLEASE LET ME KNOW HOW IT TURNED OUT FOR YOU!
If you tried this Cherry Tomato & Basil Focaccia or any other recipe on my website, please let me know how you got on in the comments below. I love hearing from you. Also, please leave a star rating whilst you’re there!
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