Focaccia Genovese

(makes 1 | 3.5 hours | medium)

Yesterday was a very good day. I FINALLY managed to create an almost-perfect focaccia Genovese. “Almost-perfect” because as my mother very kindly pointed out, it was slightly lacking in salt. Mother aside, I was still extremely pleased with the outcome of my creation, after quite a few failed attempts. 

Three focaccias, two kilos and thirty pimples later, I feel like I can conquer the world. Here is the recipe. 

250g “0” flour (or tough bread flour) – 150g water – 5g brewer’s yeast – 15g EVOO – 2 pinches of salt – 1 heaped tsp of honey

50g water with 2 teaspoons of salt (for the salamoia) – 25g EVOO – salt flakes, to top (optional)

  1. Place the flour in a bowl and crumble the brewer’s yeast. Add half the water, the salt and 1 teaspoon of honey, start mixing with your hands, after a few minutes add the olive oil. Once you’ve mixed for a few minutes, add the rest of the water and start kneading. The dough will be very sticky at the beginning but don’t give up on kneading. Make sure there are no lumps or bumps. Fold the dough in half, cover the bowl with a kitchen towel and place it in the oven (which is turned off and just has the light on) for 30 minutes. 
  2. After 30 minutes have passed, pour enough olive oil to cover a baking tray (20x30cm), place the dough on top and spread it out slightly. Let it rest, covered for another 30 minutes. 
  3. ​Spread out the dough even more, try and cover the whole baking tray, let it rest for an hour, always covered!
  4. Pour some olive oil onto your hands, grease them well and make holes using the top part of your fingers (not just the tips). Start from the top of the focaccia and make your way down to the bottom.
  5. Pour the salamoia evenly over the focaccia and then the olive oil. Cover it one last time and let it rest for another hour. Sprinkle a handful of salt flakes over it just before placing it in the oven.
  6. Preheat the oven to 230 degrees Celsius and bake the focaccia for 15 minutes.
  7. Remove from the oven and brush it with olive oil (this will make it look gorgeous and shiny). Remove from the baking tray and cut!