Friday, 21 March 2014

Recipe: One Hour Skillet Focaccia

Today's blog post is a short one folks - because that captures exactly what this recipe is: quick and easy.

This is the perfect side to serve with just about any meal. The first time I made this recipe, I could not have predicted the reaction. The boyfriend and my sister very quickly became addicts, polishing off the entire skillet in one sitting and asking for it almost every week. It's pretty much like crack in bread form. Butter, cheese, a little garlic, covering bread fresh from the oven. What could be better?

And more importantly, who would have thought that you could make homemade focaccia bread in just one hour? With yeast including rising time?! Well, Crunchy Creamy Sweet knew you could, and that's where that recipe comes from today! I've adapted the recipe to suit our tastes, but it is a perfect focaccia bread recipe all on its own.

The one thing you absolutely must have to make this focaccia bread is a cast iron skillet. It gives the focaccia bread the nice crispy bottom. And if you're a regular reader of my blog (hi mom!) or you frequent my little kitchen, you know I'm obsessed with my le cresuet cast iron skillet.

We've had this foaccia bread with various pastas, soups, and stews so far. This is such a simple recipe and goes perfectly with almost anything you can imagine. 

One Hour Focaccia Bread
(recipe adapted from Crunch Creamy Sweet)


Ingredients: 

  • 3/4 cup very warm water
  • 1/2 tsp granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp quick rise yeast
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 c all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt

  • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted and divided
  • 3 Tbsp shredded asiago or parmesan cheese
  • 1/3 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/3 tsp garlic powder (not garlic salt!)
  • 3 turns fresh ground black pepper

Start by preheating your oven to 220 F and greasing your cast iron skillet. I do this with about 1 tbsp of olive oil (I just eyeball it) and use a piece of paper towel to grease the entire skillet, including the sides. When your oven reaches 220 F, turn it off and keep the door closed. This is going to be your warm environment to speed up the rising time for your dough.


Make sure your water is very warm, as I have found this makes a huge difference to how the yeast reacts. I bring my water up to 175 F in my kettle. If you're a tea addict like I am, I strongly recommend one of these awesome kettles with different temperature settings. The 175 F is for green teas.  But back to the recipe!

Get your stand mixer ready with the paddle attachment - you're going to switch to the dough hook eventually so have that on hand. Add in the hot water and stir in the sugar until it dissolves. This just takes a couple seconds, you don't want your water to cool down too much.

Sprinkle the yeast over the water and stir a couple times. Allow the mixture to sit until the yeast starts to foam (takes about 5 minutes). You'll be able to tell when it's nice and foamy and it starts to give off that yeast-y smell.

Turn your mixer onto a low speed and slowly add one cup of the flour and the salt, mixing until combined. Add in the oil and mix well. 

Once the oil is mixed in, continue adding the rest of the flour slowly. After I've added about 1/3 of the remaining flour I switch to the dough hook. Continue adding flour until the dough pulls away from the side of the bowl. Hang onto the remaining flour.

Remove the dough from the mixing bowl and place it on a lightly floured surface. Using the remaining flour, fold it into the dough and knead it a few times until it is smooth and elasticy but not sticky. Shape into a ball and roll it out to a size approximately the same as your skillet. Again, this is something I just eyeball. There's no magic measurement to it. 


Place your dough in the skillet and stretch it up the sides. Cover the skillet and dough completely with a *clean* kitchen towel and place it in the warm oven for 20 minutes. Your oven is turned off at this point after reaching 220 F. 

When your timer goes off, remove the skillet from the oven and preheat it to 400 F. Melt your butter in a small bowl in the microwave and mix in the dried oregano and garlic powder.

Now for the fun part! Your dough will have roughly doubled in size. Using your fingers, poke indentations all over the dough. These little holes will collect all of the delicious butter mixture.

Brush the dough with about half the butter and sprinkle all of the shredded cheese over top. Bake for 20 minutes in your 400 F oven or until it looks golden brown and delicious.

When you take the skillet out of the oven, brush it with the remaining butter mixture. Your focaccia bread will literally slide right out of the skillet. Slice and serve warm. Make sure you put a slice or two aside for yourself or it may disappear before you have a chance to even try it!