Garlic Focaccia Bread
Garlic Focaccia Bread
5 from 1 vote
Garlic focaccia bread is a delightful twist on the traditional Italian bread. It's an aromatic blend of fresh garlic, rosemary, and olive oil, creating a flavourful, yet simple-to-make delight. Perfect for both beginners and seasoned bakers, this recipe guides you through the satisfying process of bread making.
Garlic Focaccia Bread

Garlic focaccia bread, a mouth-watering variant of the classic Italian bread, is a fantastic combination of simplicity and flavour. This bread, originating from the shores of Italy, has become a global sensation.  

Its history traces back to ancient Rome, where ‘panis focacius’ was a flat bread baked on the hearth. The modern version, enhanced with garlic and rosemary, adds a delightful twist to the traditional recipe. 

For a home cook, mastering this garlic focaccia bread is a walk in the park. Its process is straightforward, making it a perfect venture for those new to bread making. The key lies in the kneading and proofing – essential steps that turn simple ingredients into a fluffy and aromatic delight. 

Variations of focaccia are abundant. Each region in Italy boasts its unique take, using local ingredients like olives, tomatoes, or onions. However, the garlic and rosemary version stands out for its aromatic profile, making it a popular choice in kitchens worldwide. 

When you think of making bread, you might assume it’s a complicated process, reserved for skilled bakers. However, this garlic focaccia recipe is here to change that perception. With clear steps and everyday ingredients, it demystifies the art of bread making. 

The combination of garlic and rosemary in this recipe is not just about adding flavour. Garlic, known for its robust aroma and taste, infuses the bread with a savoury note that’s hard to resist.  

Rosemary, with its pine-like fragrance, complements the garlic, creating a sensory experience that’s as delightful to smell as it is to taste. 

Baking this bread fills your kitchen with an inviting aroma, a prelude to the joy of biting into the freshly baked, warm, and soft focaccia. It’s perfect for dipping in olive oil, as a side to your main course, or even as a base for sandwiches. 

When preparing this recipe, you’ll notice the dough’s transformation – from a simple mix of flour, yeast, and water to a beautifully risen, soft dough. This magical process, known as proofing, is crucial. It gives the bread its light, airy texture.  

The trick is to find a warm spot in your kitchen and let the dough take its time to double in size. Patience here is key. 

The act of creating dimples in the dough isn’t just for aesthetics. It allows the olive oil, garlic, and rosemary mix to seep into the bread, ensuring every bite is infused with flavour. This step also contributes to the bread’s iconic texture – a crispy crust with a soft, pillowy interior. 

Serving this garlic focaccia bread is a joy in itself. Whether it’s alongside a hearty soup, as part of a cheese platter, or simply enjoyed on its own, it’s sure to be a hit. Its versatility makes it perfect for any meal – be it a casual lunch or a special dinner gathering. 

In conclusion, garlic focaccia bread is more than just a recipe; it’s a journey through the joys of bread making. Its ease, combined with the satisfaction of creating something so delightful from scratch, makes it a recipe worth trying.  

Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned cook, this bread is bound to become a favourite in your baking repertoire. 

Expert Tip: For an extra crispy crust, preheat your baking tray in the oven before placing the dough on it. This immediate heat helps create a beautifully crisp bottom. 

What Ingredients to Use & Why

Strong White Bread Flour: This flour is the backbone of our garlic focaccia bread, providing the necessary gluten content to achieve a chewy, yet soft texture. It’s crucial for creating the structure of the bread, ensuring it rises beautifully and holds its shape.  

If you can’t find strong white bread flour, bread flour with a high protein content is an excellent alternative. This substitution maintains the desired texture and structure of the bread. 

Salt: Salt not only enhances the overall flavour of the bread but also strengthens the gluten network in the dough.  

This results in a better texture and helps control yeast fermentation, ensuring an even rise. If you’re looking to switch things up, try using different types of artisan salts, like Himalayan pink or sea salt, for a subtle variation in taste. 

Dried Yeast: Dried yeast is a reliable and accessible leavening agent, essential for making the dough rise. 

It works by fermenting the sugars in the flour, releasing carbon dioxide, which creates the bread’s airy texture. For those who prefer, fresh yeast can be used as a substitute, though the quantity will need to be adjusted as fresh yeast is more potent than dried. 

Olive Oil: Olive oil is a key ingredient, adding moisture and a distinct, fruity flavour to the bread. It also contributes to the crispness of the crust. For a different nuance in flavour, you could try using infused olive oils, like garlic or herb-infused varieties, to amplify the bread’s aromatic profile. 

Garlic: Garlic is the highlight, infusing the bread with its unmistakable aroma and taste. It’s what gives this focaccia its character. Roasted garlic can be used as an alternative for a sweeter, milder flavour. 

Fresh Rosemary Leaves: Rosemary adds a fragrant, earthy tone that complements the garlic beautifully. Its needle-like leaves infuse the bread with a subtle, piney flavour.  

If rosemary is not to your liking or not available, thyme or oregano can be good alternatives, offering a different but equally delightful herbal note to the bread. 

Sea Salt Flakes: Sprinkled on top of the bread before baking, sea salt flakes create a delightful contrast in texture and a burst of flavour with each bite. They also enhance the bread’s visual appeal. If sea salt flakes aren’t available, coarse kosher salt can be a suitable replacement, though it will have a slightly different texture and saltiness. 

These ingredients, each with their unique role, come together to create a harmonious blend of flavours and textures in our garlic focaccia bread.  

From the strength of the bread flour to the aromatic touch of garlic and rosemary, each component plays a part in crafting this delightful bread. Remember, while the ingredients are simple, the magic lies in how they interact with each other during the baking process. 

Expert Tip: If you’re short on time, use a warm spot in your kitchen to speed up the proofing process. The top of a refrigerator or near a warm oven can be ideal spots. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I make garlic focaccia bread without a stand mixer? 

Absolutely! While a stand mixer makes the process easier, it’s not essential. You can mix and knead the dough by hand. The key is to knead until the dough is smooth and elastic, which might take about 10 minutes by hand. It’s a bit of a workout, but it’s totally doable and quite satisfying! 

How do I know when my focaccia bread is properly baked? 

Your garlic focaccia bread is done when it’s golden brown on top and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom. The baking time in the recipe is a good guideline, but always keep an eye on your bread as oven temperatures can vary. Also, if you notice the top browning too quickly, you can loosely cover the bread with foil for the remainder of the baking time. 

Can I use different toppings on my focaccia bread? 

Definitely! This recipe is versatile. While garlic and rosemary are a classic combination, feel free to get creative. Olives, sun-dried tomatoes, caramelised onions, or different herbs like thyme or oregano can make excellent toppings. Just remember to press them gently into the dough before baking. 

Is it possible to make this bread ahead of time? 

Yes, you can prepare the dough ahead of time. Once it’s kneaded, place it in the refrigerator for a slow rise, covered, for up to 24 hours. When you’re ready to bake, let the dough come to room temperature, then proceed with the remaining steps. This method can even enhance the flavour of the bread. 

Can I freeze garlic focaccia bread? 

Certainly! Focaccia freezes well. Once cooled, wrap it tightly in cling film and then in foil. It can be frozen for up to a month. To reheat, thaw at room temperature and warm it in the oven for a few minutes to refresh its crust and flavour. 

These frequently asked questions aim to help you navigate any uncertainties you might have while making garlic focaccia bread, ensuring your baking experience is as smooth and enjoyable as possible. 

Expert Tip: Experiment with infusing your olive oil. Soak garlic, rosemary, or chilli flakes in olive oil for a few days before baking for an intensified flavour profile in your focaccia. 

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Garlic Focaccia Bread

Garlic Focaccia Bread

by Nabeela Kauser
Garlic focaccia bread is a delightful twist on the traditional Italian bread. It's an aromatic blend of fresh garlic, rosemary, and olive oil, creating a flavourful, yet simple-to-make delight.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course Baking, Side Dish, Sides
Cuisine Italian
Servings 8
Calories 265 kcal

Ingredients

  • 500 g Plain Flour
  • 2 tsp Salt
  • 7 g Dried Yeast
  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 300 ml Water warm
  • 4 cloves Garlic minced
  • 2 tbsp Rosemary chopped

Instructions

  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour and salt.
  • In a separate bowl, mix the dried yeast with the warm water and let it sit for a few minutes until it becomes frothy.
  • Make a well in the flour mixture and pour in the yeast mixture and olive oil.
  • Stir until a dough forms, then knead the dough on a lightly floured surface for about 10 minutes until it becomes smooth and elastic.
  • Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover it with a clean kitchen towel, and let it proof in a warm place for about 1 hour or until it has doubled in size.
  • Preheat your oven to 220°C (200°C fan/ Gas Mark 7).
  • Punch down the risen dough, then roll it out to fit a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
  • Use your fingers to create dimples in the dough.
  • Mix the minced garlic and chopped rosemary with a couple of tablespoons of olive oil, then drizzle this mixture evenly over the dough, making sure to get it into the dimples.
  • Sprinkle the top with sea salt flakes.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until the focaccia is golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.
  • Drizzle with extra olive oil while still warm.
  • Allow it to cool slightly before slicing and serving.

Notes

Nutritional facts:
The provision of nutritional information is done so merely as a courtesy and should not be taken as a guarantee.

Nutrition

Calories: 265kcalCarbohydrates: 49gProtein: 7gFat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 586mgPotassium: 86mgFibre: 2gSugar: 0.2gVitamin A: 16IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 20mgIron: 3mg
Keyword Baked, Bread, Food, Garlic, Garlic Bread, Recipe, Sides, Vegetarian
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Cook with Nabeela

Hi, I'm Nabeela!

I love to cook! I want to share with you my favourite, delicious family-friendly recipes. I want to inspire you to create fantastic food for your family every day.

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