I have just finished reading Little Beach Street Bakery by Jenny Colgan which is such a perfect summer read. Set in Cornwall, it is a story about Polly being brave enough to drop out of the rat race and find her happy. Oh and a witty love story to boot. Some girls get all the luck, eh? But as you might have guessed from the title, the story actually centres around a bakery and Polly makes the most amazing bread. I was drooling with every turn of the page I think it was just about my perfect book!
Now there was a time when I would eat bread for breakfast, lunch and dinner. And sometimes even in between. And I wonder how I put so much weight on? Ha! I don’t eat much bread these days it has to be said but when I do, only real bread will do. So completely inspired by Little Beach Street Bakery, I had a go at making my own rosemary and sea salt focaccia and it was so easy (and utterly delicious) that I thought I would share it here with you.
Mix the flour with the salt. Pour the sachet of yeast into the hand warm water then add this as well as the olive oil to the dry mixture. Stir together then knead for a good ten minutes before covering and leaving to stand for one hour. (Of course, if you have a bread maker then feel free to let it do the mixing and kneading bit for you but as you can see, it really is an easy bread to make by hand. I love my bread maker but there is nothing quite like getting your hands in there sometimes!)
After the focaccia dough has sat for one hour, stretch it out into a long oval shape on a baking tray and leave for another forty minutes. Then press your fingers into the risen dough to make little indents and cook in the oven at 220C. After twenty minutes, remove from the loaf from the oven to add the rosemary and sea salt topping and just a light drizzle of olive oil. Then pop it back in the oven for another five minutes until it is golden brown.
I can’t believe just how easy it is to make focaccia or more to the point, why on earth haven’t I tried it sooner?! There is something so satisfying about making your own bread, especially when it can be thrown together with a few store cupboard staples and a sprig or three of rosemary from the garden. Yum!