June 30, 2008

Focaccia Egg Sandwich from Scratch


Finally finally...after thinking, dreaming of focaccia day and night (hehe I'm just exaggerating), I finally got to make it yesterday.

Weeks ago, I bought this little basil pot from Market Place at Raffles City which I thought would be great to grow my own little pot so that I can pick my own fresh herbs whenever I want! I brought it to my office at first, thinking that it would be great to take care of it myself and at the same time inject some greenery into my office. Thereafter I find that it's leaves started drooping. Doing some googling, I learnt that these plants need sunlight to grow well, not neccessary direct sunlight but it loves the outdoor. So I had to bring it home. There it is now, growing healthily with a good abundance of green leaves. One variation of focaccia is to use herbs, rosemary being one of a popular one. I did not have rosemary, so I decided to use basil.

The entire making process wasn't that tough, with the help of my breadmaker to do the kneading. What you need is just time. I used the Basic Focaccia recipe from Williams-Sonoma's Essential of Baking. There are many bread recipes which I'm dying to try as well... They just look simply enticing.

Ingredients:

2 1/2 tsp of active dry yeast
220 ml of warm water
1/2 tsp sugar
90 ml olive oil
390 g all purpose flour (I used bread flour)
1 tsp fine sea salt
1/2 tsp coarse salt (optional)

Method:

  1. Place ingredients into the breadmaker according to the sequence - water, sugar, fine salt, 60 ml of the olive oil, flour and yeast.
  2. Set the breadmaker to "dough mode" to begin the kneading cycle (the cycle takes 20 minutes)
  3. After 20 minutes, restart the cycle again and knead for another 10 to 15 minutes.
  4. After the kneading process, form the dough into a ball, transfer to a lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap.
  5. Let dough rise until double in size, about 1 hour.
  6. Pour remaining 30 ml evenly onto a sheet pan. Turn the dough out into the pan. (I didn't use 30 ml as it's too oily. I pour a suitable amount and spread it evenly)
  7. Press dough evenly into the pan. If dough is too elastic, let rest for 5 minutes.
  8. Cover pan loosely with plastic wrap or dry kitchen towel. Let it rise of 1 hour.
  9. Position a rack at the lower third of the oven. Preheat to 230C.
  10. Dimple the dough by pressing your fingertips all the way into it at 1-inch intervals over the entire surface.
  11. Sprinkle with coarse sea salt and 1-2 tbsp chopped fresh herbs, such as basil, thyme, oregano or rosemary.
  12. Bake until golden brown, for 20 to 30 minutes.
  13. Transfer to wire rack and let cool in the pan.
Note: I had halved the recipe. If you like the original method of kneading by hand or with your stand mixer, feel free to drop me a comment

Recipe source: Williams-Sonoma's Essentials of Baking


Even before the bread is cooled completely, I wasted no time in slicing it, fried an egg and had my favourite sandwich made all from scratch! Nothing beats having homemade bread filled with favourite fillings. :D

9 comments:

Happy Homebaker said...

Wow, your focaccia sandwiches look so good!! I made a rosemary wholemeal version two weeks ago...but we had it plain, just spread with some butter, lazy me :)
You know what, I have always been wondering whether the little pots of fresh basils will grow well here. Did you re-pot it? Now, you make me want to rush down to get a pot!

ovenhaven said...

I second HHB; your focaccia sandwiches look really good! The bread looks really fluffy and soft. Great job!

Aimei said...

Hi HHB, rosemary wholemeal version? This sounds good! So far it is growing well, I place it at my service kitchen balcony where it receives air and sunlight (but not direct). I didn't repot it, unless it grows taller I guess.

I find that the taste when incorporated into dishes wasn't so strong...is it cos basil is not such a strong herb? Well, you may just try one for yourself! :)

Thank you Ovenhaven! :)

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Aimei, I bought the sweet basil plant from the market place (vivo city outlet). The plant is quite tall and the roots are already grown out of the pot...is this the case when u first bought yours? I'm thinking whether I should re-pot it? The plant looks so pretty that I feel heart-pain to cut any leaves from it ;)

Shelly said...

This looks absolutely delicous! I found your blog today via the foodie blog roll.

Sophie said...

This looks like a really tasty focaccia recipe :)...I still haven't found the 'perfect' dough for focaccia bread, but maybe I'll have luck with this one :).

Aimei said...

HHB, Yeah mine had its roots growing out too. It's gettig taller after a few weeks and I was thinking maybe I should transfer to another pot too. Oh you mean repot got to cut away the leaves? Hehe I have no idea how to do it. :P

Hi Shelly and Sophie, thanks for dropping by! :)

Jason said...

Ummm is that a kraft single i see?

Aimei said...

Hi Jason,

Yeah that's a slice of cheese but I can't remember whether was that the kraft singles as I buy different brands randoly to try them out.

I love eggs with cheese. :)