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Liguria’s famous focaccia


Recipe

  • Serves 4

Ingredients

  • Potato – 1 (around 120 g/4 oz.) large boiled potato
  • Honey – 1 tsp
  • Warm milk – ¼ cup/60ml
  • Yeast – 25g/1 oz fresh or 7g dry
  • Plain flour – 3½ cups/435g
  • Salt – 2 ½ tsp/13g
  • Extra virgin olive oil – 1/3 cup / 85ml
  • Warm water – ¾ cup/200g

For the Top:

  • Water – 1/3 cup/85g
  • Extra virgin olive oil – 1/3 cup/85g
  • Salt
Potato – 1 (around 120 g/4 oz.) large boiled potato Honey – 1 tsp Warm milk – ¼ cup/60ml Yeast – 25g/1 oz fresh or 7g dry Plain flour – 3½ cups/435g Salt – 2 ½ tsp/13g Extra virgin olive oil – 1/3 cup / 85ml Warm water – ¾ cup/200g Water – 1/3 cup/85g Extra virgin olive oil – 1/3 cup/85g Salt

Method

We love liguria, especially now that we have a Nudo grove there. And you can’t be on the Italian Riviera long without having to experience their famous focaccia. It’s made with potato and flour but is crisp to the bite.
You can experiment with any number of toppings, but just remember that the longer you give it to rise the better.

  1. Boil the potato with the skin on and once it’s cooked peel and mash it (through a ricer if you have one).
  2. Mix the honey into the milk and add the yeast, then set it aside to proof.
  3. Sift the flour and salt onto a work surface. Make a well in the centre and add the mashed potato, olive oil and the yeasty milk mixture. Work the flour and potato into the liquid, working from the inside of the well outwards. Gradually add the rest of the water to bring the dough together. Knead the dough for 10 minutes or until it is soft and spongy. Cover with a tea towel and leave to rise in a warm place for 30 minutes.
  4. Once risen, knock back the dough and roll it out to a thickness of about 1cm/½ inch. Place on an oiled baking sheet with a rim and leave to rise again for 30 minutes.
  5. Make deep dents in the dough with your fingers, being careful not to make holes in the dough.
  6. Cover the dough and let rise again for another 30 minutes.
  7. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/GM6. Sprinkle the dough with salt crystals. Shake the water and oil for the top together in a jar (or mix in a bowl) and quickly pour it evenly over the top of the focaccia dough. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes, until crisp and brown. Let it cool on a rack and then slice into strips. Eat warm.