Focaccia is a great bread to make on the EGG and works really well on the large BGE. We have also made it on our Mini BGE when travelling, but that is more an act of bravado than practicality because of the size of the loaf you can make!! The real advantage when cooking bread on the large rather than the Mini or MiniMax is that it is so much easier to get the bread away from the charcoal as the heat source and get it towards the dome. This minimises the temperature difference between the top and bottom of the bread and allows a more even cooking. Using the standard Plate setter in the Large with the feet in the up position goes a long way to achieving this. On this occasion we were also going to try the EGGspander system to allow double height cooking with 2 pans/trays. This moves the bread a little further into the dome too.
The first thing was to make the basic bread dough. Ideally I would choose Focaccia flour (also suitable for pizza bases) but a strong white bread flour will work almost as well, and was our choice here. The flour was added to a mixing bowl and then the salt and yeast (at opposite sides of the bowl). The olive oil and water were then added and the dough was mixed to form a wet ball of dough. A little more flour may be needed to stop the dough sticking to the bowl and your hands. Add some oil to a solid work surface and knead the dough for around 10 mins (or 5 mins in a mixer). The dough was popped back into the oiled bowl, covered with clingfilm, and rested for about an hour for it to double in size.
Whilst the dough was working its magic we took a large handful of wild garlic leaves and a sprinkle of rock salt and ground the garlic leaves into a paste. This was then mixed with some olive oil and set to one side.
After about an hour, the dough was knocked back with a quick knead – to take out some of the air. It was divided between our 2 Tefal ingenio pans which had been lightly oiled. The dough was first worked on a solid work surface until they were around the same diameter as the pans and then placed in the pans.
The wild garlic/olive oil mix was poured liberally over the dough and then it was “prodded all over with fingers” to flatten further and introduce the oil and the garlic into the dough. The dough was covered with clingfilm and left for around 30 mins till it doubled in size.
Whilst this was happening the Big Green Egg was set up in indirect mode with the platesetter in the feet up position. We were also using the EGGspander system with the platesetter to allow 2 level cooking. The EGG was set to stabilise at 200-220C dome temperature. Once the focaccia had risen, the trays with the bread dough were added to the EGG and left to cook till golden brown. This takes around 20 minutes or so – but have a quick peek after 15 minutes!
Once cooked the bread was left to cool on a cooling rack and a little more olive oil was poured onto it to finish off the bread. Serve warm or cold – it is delightful with a little dipping oil and a touch of balsamic!
Do feel free to change the toppings, olives, tomatoes, rosemary or just sea salt – there are so many options to play with!
Wild Garlic Focaccia
Hand Made Focaccia with wild garlic and sea salt topping
- 500g Allinson Strong White Bread Flour
- 7g Allinson Easy Bake Yeast
- 1tsp table salt
- Sprinkle of rock salt
- 2tbsp olive oil and more for pouring
- 300ml warm water
- Step 1 Add flour to a mixing bowl and then add the salt and yeast at opposite sides of the bowl. To this add the olive oil and water and mix to form a wet ball of dough. Add a little more flour if needed to stop the dough sticking to the bowl and your hands.
- Step 2 Oil a solid work surface and knead the dough for around 10 mins (or 5 mins if using a mixer). Return the dough to the oiled bowl, cover with clingfilm, and rest for about an hour for it to double in size.
- Step 3 Take a handful of wild garlic leaves and a sprinkle of rock salt and grind the garlic leaves into a paste. Mix the paste with some olive oil and set to one side.
- Step 4 After about an hour knock the dough back and divided between cooking trays. Work the dough on a solid surface until they were around the same size as the trays. Pour the wild garlic mix over the dough and prod all over with fingers to flatten and introduce the oil and the garlic into the dough. Cover the dough with cling film and leave for around 30 mins till it has doubled in size.
- Step 5 Set up the Big Green Egg in indirect mode with the platesetter in the feet up position. Stabilise the temperature at 200-220C dome temperature.
- Step 6 Once the focaccia has risen, place the trays in the EGG and leave to cook till golden brown for around 20 minutes or so.
- Step 7 Once cooked leave to cool on a cooling tray and pour a little more olive oil onto it before serving