Top this focaccia with figs or olives for a tasty garnish.
Words and recipe: Nicola Galloway
This bread is simple to prepare and makes a lovely lunch with friends, or a side to a hearty soup for dinner. It can be topped with fresh figs, ripe grapes, caramelized onions, plump kalamata olives, feta, or a selection of fresh herbs.
Learn how to make a sourdough starter using only flour and water here
2 cups white wheat or spelt flour
½ cup wholemeal wheat or spelt flour
2 teaspoons chopped fresh herbs (oregano, rosemary, thyme)
1 teaspoon salt + extra for sprinkling
½ cup active sourdough starter, fed 6 to 8 hours prior
1 tablespoon olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
Additions & toppings
ripe figs or grapes
In a large mixing bowl combine the flours, herbs and salt. Make a well and pour over the water, sourdough starter and olive oil. Use a fork to bring together into a rough loaf shape. Cover with a plate and set aside for 30 minutes.
Gently mix in some of the toppings and additions (leaving some aside) such as caramelized onions and/or feta until combined. Shape into a ball and drizzle the dough with olive oil and toss to coat lightly. Cover and set aside in a warm position for 3 to 4 hours until the dough has doubled in size.
Brush a heavy cast-iron frying pan with olive oil, or use a 22cm cake tin lined with baking paper. Tip the dough into the pan/tin and use fingers to press evenly into the sides, making indents all over the surface of the dough. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with extra salt. Leave to rise for 40 to 60 minutes until the dough is visibly puffy.
Preheat the oven to 220°C. Once the dough is ready, dot with remaining toppings (olives, figs, grapes, herbs) and place the pan or cake tin into the oven, turning down the heat to 200°C.
Bake for 25 to 30 minutes until golden. Use a spatula to slide on to a cooling rack. The bread is best eaten warm.
OTHER SOURDOUGH RECIPES TO TRY
This is an extract from our new special edition In Your Backyard: Living Lightly
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