Focaccia is traditional Italian yeast bread , which is sometimes compared to pizza. But the main thing here is not the additional garnish products, as with pizza, but the bread itself.
Focaccia is one of the many excellent Italian pasta products, which has long since crossed the borders of its homeland and is very popular all over the world.
If you want your home to be filled with an irresistible aroma, and your palate to look forward to the first bite, make yourself whole grain focaccia with dried mushrooms and oregano.
How to prepare a good focaccia?
Focaccia was used in ancient times for an open hearth, which was located in the center of the house and was called focus. At that time yeast was not known and the dough was kneaded quite simply from flour, water, salt and olive oil. .
In those days, according to the Italians, olive oil was even cheaper than flour, because Italy was the land of sailors , not of farmers. The sailors baked the loaves directly on the hot stones on the deck. Historians believe that focaccia is the ancestor of pizza. In ancient Rome the phrase panis focacius meant flat bread made in ashes.
In the future, the recipe became more complicated and the great-grandmothers of modern Italians began to use all kinds of products they had in the house. Anchovies, mushrooms, olives, seasonal vegetables and cheese were placed on the flat cakes. The classic focaccia is prepared in a stone wood oven and served with appetizers, salads, soups and meat dishes, and can also be used as bread for sandwiches.
The focaccia can be round or rectangular, thin or thick. Basically it’s flat bread with no filling inside . Focaccia can be made of white flour as well as wholemeal or rye.
The dough is kneaded with yeast, which is shaped like a pie and before baking it is usually spread with olive oil and pressed in places with fingers to make dents.
These “pockets” retain oil, spices and herbs that give flavor, and the oil prevents the bread from drying out. Well-cooked focaccia should be light, porous and fragrant, not greasy and heavy.
Thanks to the use of various products and spices for garnish on top, and sometimes as a filling, a new taste is obtained each time. The irresistible aroma of bakery products is largely due to spices such as rosemary, oregano, basil and other herbs.
The different regions of Italy have their own traditions of making focaccia. For example, focaccia Barese (Bari) is made with fresh tomatoes or thinly sliced potatoes, focaccia Genovese and a thin loaf, traditional for Genoa , seasoned with olive oil and red onions.
We also have to mention focaccia di Recco (Liguria), which is the focaccia with cheese. The sweet option is focaccia veneta, a traditional Easter delicacy from the Veneto region.
Whole grain focaccia with mushrooms and oregano
More and more people are turning to wholemeal breads either because they are more dietary or simply because of their taste. Only wholemeal flour or a mixture of white flour can be used. More yeast and a little olive oil are needed.
Your focaccia will become very special if you prepare it with mushrooms and sprinkle with oregano . There are several options. You can use fresh mushrooms, but in this case we focused on dried mushrooms, which give an incredible flavor to the bread.
The mushrooms must be pre-soaked to become juicy. For splendor, finally add grated hard cheese and bake in the oven.
Recipe for Wholemeal Focaccia with dried mushrooms and oregano
- 400 g wholemeal flour
- 360 g of lukewarm water
- 20 g of fresh yeast
- 40 g extra virgin olive oil
- 5 g of sugar
- 1 full teaspoon of salt
- 1 handful of dried mushrooms
- 3-4 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
- black pepper if desired
Method of preparation – Dissolve the yeast in a little warm water, adding a little sugar. Then in a deep bowl mix the yeast with the oil, flour and salt and stir.
Cover with cling film and let it rest in the fridge for a few hours. Then finish fermenting for an hour at room temperature until it doubles in volume.
Grease a flat surface and knead the dough on it, which should become soft, smooth and elastic. Let it rest for 10-15 minutes and then roll it out evenly.
Meanwhile, prepare the dried mushrooms by washing them first. Pour boiling water over the mushrooms and leave to soften for 15-20 minutes. If you use fresh mushrooms, stew them briefly with a little garlic and dill and leave them to cool.
Shape the focaccia with your hands in the pan, smear it with olive oil and press with your fingers in places so that slightly dents are obtained. Arrange the mushrooms on top and sprinkle with oregano.
Finally, sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese. Allow the focaccia to rise again for an hour and after about twenty minutes you will see the first bubbles appear.
After 60 minutes the focaccia is ready to bake at 220 ° for twenty minutes in advance preheated oven and no ventilation. To get a suitably thick and crispy crust, place a pot of boiling water at the base of the already hot chamber.
Spray the walls of the oven with water immediately after putting the tray with the focaccia to get a good amount of steam. Repeat the operation when 3-4 minutes have elapsed.
When the focaccia looks golden brown, take it out of the oven and check that it is well baked in the base. If all is well, place it to cool briefly on the oven rack.
You can serve it hot or cold . It is delicious even the next day, keeping it in the oven for a few minutes
Do Bulgarians like such a recipe and how to prepare it at home?
There is no tastier bread than home-made. The taste of the Italian focaccia is liked by the Bulgarians and can take a worthy place in the home menu. The focaccia with mushrooms is suitable for the festive table or for diversification of every dinner.
You can make whole grain focaccia with dried mushrooms and oregano at home, by including the spices you like. All products for it are available in our country, and if you do not find original Italian ingredients, you can easily replace them with ours.
The stores now have a variety of quality flours , including wholemeal, which you need for this recipe. The supply of dried mushrooms is not a problem either, and you can replace them with other dried mushrooms or fresh ones.
Oregano is a spice that is also used in Bulgarian cuisine, and our herbs are of high quality. Instead of Italian cheese you can try Bulgarian yellow cheese and the result will be excellent.