The perfect rosemary focaccia is light, doughy, salty, herby, and warm. And the top is a gentle, golden brown with perfectly crisped topping.
Focaccia is one of those breads that truly requires the right recipe and technique in order for it to be really good because it's quite easy for it to come out too doughy, chewy, or dense.
And most importantly it should be served warm not cold. Ripping off a piece of this rosemary focaccia bread apart should feel like a hug from an old friend.
The History of Focaccia
Focaccia has an incredible history, it's one of the oldest bread recipes in the world. In ancient Rome, it was called "Panis Focacius" and made as a flatbread and baked on the hearth. The word focaccia comes from the Latin language "focus" which means baked-on hearth.
For Romans, focaccia was considered so important it was offered to the Gods during celebrations. The original recipe was a mixture of white flour, a pinch of salt, olive oil, and water.
The dough was rolled out using a rolling pin, then placed into an oiled tray, and seasoned with salt and extra virgin olive oil. Finally, it was placed into a hot oven until the surface of the dough turned an even gentle brown.
Different Types of Focaccia
A lot of cities in Italy have their own special type of focaccia with the most famous being "Genovese focaccia". It's a classic and so simple, with just extra virgin olive oil and salt as the topping.
Traditionally it’s served during happy hour, or aperitivo as they say in Italy, because it pairs well with a good glass of white wine. You can also find it as part of an appetizer.
This bread comes with all kinds of toppings, from roasted vegetables to meat. The sky truly is the limit, however, we tend to lean more towards traditional toppings, such as rosemary, olive oil, and salt.
Focaccia barese which has tomatoes and olives as the toppings is also super popular and very delicious. Today, it's one of the most famous simple Italian foods. However, in order for focaccia to truly shine it must be made well, and with the correct balance of sweet and savory.
The most important part of focaccia is the preparation of the dough. There are quite a few steps required to make a great dough, but it's worth it. Don't skip any steps, be patient, and make this well ahead of time. The good thing about this recipe is that it can be prepped pretty far ahead and only takes 8 minutes to cook. Then you just have to slice and serve!
The keyword here is moderation. This isn't pizza, it's focaccia so hold the cheese and sauce. There's no need to go overboard with the toppings. You can use just about any vegetables, we recommend using just 2 or 3. Onions, tomatoes, and olives would be delicious. So would shaved eggplant and oregano. For this recipe, we top ours off with rosemary, salt, and a good drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Enjoy!
You May Also Like…
If you make this pasta with tomato sauce, please leave a comment and give this recipe a rating! We love to hear from you and do respond to comments. And if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag us on Instagram and Facebook and use #EXAUoliveoil so we can repost.