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Amazing no-knead garlic and basil focaccia for summer sharing

Posted July 20, 2020 by Squires Kitchen Shop


Amazing no-knead garlic and basil focaccia for summer sharing. Enjoy this recipe from our friends at Virtuous Bread !


  • Roasting tin: 33cm x 3 1/2cm (13” x 9”)
  • Tin foil
  • Spatula
  • Makes a focaccia about 13” x 9” in size



    • Three hours (or so) before you want to eat, measure out the flour, water, salt and yeast into a big bowl and stir everything well. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and put it on the counter. Leave it for 1–2 hours. If it’s a really hot day, you can do this in the morning and pop it in the fridge until a few hours before you are ready to eat. Don’t worry too much about the timing, as this dough is very forgiving.
    • About an hour before you want to bake, line your big roasting tin about with some foil and pour in 100ml of olive oil. The tin should ideally be about 4cm – 5cm (1 1/2” – 2”) deep. Tilt the tin in all directions to make sure the oil covers the whole bottom of the tray.
    • Wet your hand with water so you don’t stick to the dough. Put your hands under the dough and lift it up and put it back down again, stretching it a few times. Don’t press down on it or you will get rid of all the air. This stretching and folding thins the dough membranes and enables it to get nice and bubbly.
    • Scrape the dough out into the tin and then put some oil on your hands and get under the dough and literally flip it over – you want to coat the dough with oil. Then get under the dough with your hands and stretch it out to fill the tray. Don't push it down though; just stretch it out.
    • Let the dough sit there for a further hour (you don’t have to cover it) and then pre-heat the oven to 230˚C (450˚F/Gas Mark 8). When the oven is up to temperature, scatter the garlic, basil and salt over the top. Remember the corners too! Then drizzle the extra 50ml of olive oil over the top.
    • Wet your hands with a little water and, using all 10 fingers, press rapidly into the dough as if you were playing cords on the piano. This makes little indents to trap the ingredients and the oil.
    • Place the tin in the second to top rack to ensure the focaccia will go nice and brown, and bake it for 15–25 minutes. It’s hard to be precise because some ovens are really hot and some are not. When the focaccia is a dark golden colour, remove from the oven and carefully lift up one edge of the focaccia with a big spatula. Peel away the foil and have a look at the bottom; it should be golden brown and crispy. If it’s pale and flabby, put it back in the oven for another five minutes. If you are worried about the top going too brown, just cover it with some non-stick baking parchment.
    • Once it is cooked, take it out of the oven and immediately remove it from the tin. Then leave it to cool on a wire rack

    Top Tip: You can substitute the instant yeast for 5g of dry active yeast or 10g of fresh yeast for this recipe. The choice is up to you!