Rosemary Focaccia with Cherries

Rosemary Focaccia with fresh Cherries,Classic Focaccia topped with fresh Rosemary Cherries, Caramelized Onions with infused Rosemary oil.

After sharing few traditional recipes from the Indian state of Rajasthan,in last week , here I am with a bread recipe from Italy, which is popular for it’s breads and pasta.

What is Focaccia


Easy to make and a crowd pleasure, flavorful Focaccia is Italian flatbread that can be baked in sheet pans, cake pans or even just like that for the rustic look. The real flavor of Focaccia comes with generous addition Extra-Virgin Olive Oil that makes tiny pools on the dimples or characteristic indentations that are formed all over the  dough.

Classic Focaccia is flavored and topped with fresh Rosemary and sea salt but you flavor it other fresh herbs of your choice, like Thyme, Basil, Oregano. One can play with various toppings on the bread from simple herbs to mushrooms, tomatoes, olives, peppers and fruits like strawberry and Cherries.

Herbs in a Cooking

Today I am here with the fruity topping of Cherries with fresh Rosemary.

Cherries are in season and I we are enjoy the fresh seasonal cherries that I recently got from my visit to local Farmers market.

Rosemary is  a herb and as mentioned above , classic focaccia is topped and flavoured with Rosemary. I love to use various herbs in my cooking. Many times we concentrate in the main ingredients, spices used in a dish but do not pay attention to the small but very important ingredient.. the herbs. Though used in  less amount as compared to the other ingredients, herbs add on to flavour and aroma of a dish. Use of right herb/s in a recipe just like the spices can make or spoil the taste of the final dish. I love using herbs in my cooking, like this twist in Indian Paneer Tikka.. Basil Pesto Paneer Tikka, Summer Cooler..Melon and Basil Aguas Fresca, Cilantro and Mint Chutney which is a staple in every Indian home, roasted bell pepper and garlic chutney which gets it distinct flavour with curry leaves or this Fresh Mint and Peas Rice Pulao.

Apart from adding on to the taste and aroma of a dish, herbs have many medicinal benefits too. Rosemary is a rich of iron, calcium and Vit B-6. It should be used in limited quantity like many other herbs as first it has very overpowering taste and secondly it may cause uneasiness and vomiting in some.

Rosemary was traditionally used to help alleviate muscle pain, improve memory, boost the immune and circulatory system, and promote hair growth. Possible health benefits include improved concentration, digestion, and brain aging.(Source..)

In my Facebook group Foodie Monday Bloghop Herbs are the focus this week. I suggested  the theme #207Herbalicious and we should cook something with the herbs, as it was my turn in the group to suggest the theme. Herbs not the common ones used in Indian cooking like Cilantro, Curry leaves but something different that is not very common in Indian cooking or have been introduced in recent years. Do check out what  magic my fellow bloggers have whipped out with some wonderful herbs.

What we need to make Rosemary Focaccia with Cherries

This Focaccia has the goodness of Whole Wheat Flour and infused Rosemary Oil with fresh Cherries and more fresh rosemary as topping.

Usually All Purpose FLour(APF)/Maida is used to make Focaccia, but here I have used Whole Wheat. I have limited the use of APF in my cooking and baking  as it has zero nutritional value and replace it with other nutritional flours.

Fresh Rosemary Sprigs, cherries and yeast along with salt and sugar. Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVVO) is used for the fat part and gives the bread it’s characteristic flavor. Use a good quality EVOO for making Focaccia.

Substitutes

Any other fresh herb like Thyme, Basil can be used  or in case you do not have fresh herbs used the dried ones.

I like to use Instant Yeast for baking, you can use, Active Dry yeast also, but first activate it before adding to flour. check out these Bread Kulcha recipe where I have explained how to use Dry Active yeast.

In place of fresh Cherries one can use strawberries or any other topping like cherry tomatoes,peppers or sauteed mushrooms. Or you can skip and making it just the Classic version without any toppings.

Instead of Whole Wheat flour(WWF) you can use Maida/APF too, or both in 1:1 ratio. When using only ApF adjust the amount of water used as WWF absorbs more water than APF. For every 200g or 1 Cup of APF use 120ml of Water.

Some important steps to keep in mind for a soft and perfectly baked Focaccia

  • Measure your ingredients properly.
  • Knead the dough well. Even if you are using stand mixer , knead for a few minutes with hand too.
  • Keep the dough to proof well covered either with a cling film or a damp cloth not wet and in a warm place.
  • Proofing time may differ depending on the weather and climatic conditions, so be patient. Let the dough double up on first proof , it may take 1-2 hrs or more in winters.

Let’s make Rosemary Focaccia with Cherries now..

Gather all the ingredients at one place.

In a mixing bowl, take flour, add yeast, salt and sugar to it. Make a well in center and add water slowly and gradually.

Mix the flour and  keep it for 10 minutes.

Now add infused olive oil and herbs and start kneading the dough. Knead until you get smooth dough, take about 10-15 minutes when doing with hand.

If using stand mixer, knead it for 10 minutes on medium speed, then take out the dough on work surface and kead with hands for another 5 minutes.

Take a bowl, oil it nicely and transfer the dough to it.Cover it with a damp towel or cling film and keep it at a warm place to proof.

Once the dough doubles up in size(1-2 hrs) approx. 1.5 hrs, transfer on the work surface and knead it lightly.

Line the pan with oil,that you are using to bake focaccia, transfer the dough to it and lightly spread the dough onto the pan. Or, roughly shape it with hand  for the rustic look. Cover again the pan or bread with cling film and let it sit for another 20-30 minutes. It will again rise and double up.

Now lightly knock the dough down with knuckles or make indentations with fingers. Do not press too tightly on the dough as it with inflate it. Make dimples, add toppings.

Drizzle more (1-2 tbsp) infused EVOO before baking.

Bake at 400 ºF or 200 ºC for 15-20 minutes. See the bread rising beautifully. Take it out when it starts to just getting brown.

For Infused Olive Oil

Take EVVO in a pan and heat it till warm enough. Add the fresh rosemary sprigs or any other herb that you are using. You can also add fresh garlic cloves for the garlic flavour. I did not use it as I like to add garlic powder for baking in breads and  pizza bases which I add directly in dough.

Keep the oil covered, till it cools down and as the aroma of Rosemary infuses in oil. Filter it in a bottle and use it in your salad dressings, breads and pastas.

For Toppings..

Wash and pat dry the cherries. Cut into half or quarters and take out the seeds.

To caramelize onions, thinly slice the onions and saute in oil in a a pan till light brown. Add as topping when ready to bake.

Rosemary Focaccia with Cherries

Rosemary Focaccia with fresh Cherries,Classic Focaccia topped with fresh Rosemary Cherries, Caramelized Onions with infused Rosemary oil. Learn how to make Focaccia wh step by step procedure

Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Dough Proofing Time1 hr 30 mins
Total Time2 hrs 10 mins
Course: Antipasto, Appetizer
Cuisine: Italian
Author: Swati

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Whole Wheat Flour 200g
  • ½ tsp Yeast 5gm
  • 150 ml Water just warm enough to touch
  • ½ tsp Sugar
  • ¼ tsp Salt
  • 2 tbsp Rosemary Infused Extra Virgin Olive Oil +more for drizzling
  • 2 Fresh Rosemary Sprigs
  • 1/4 Cup Finely sliced Onions
  • Fresh Cherries(cut in halves and pitted)
  • 1 tsp Olive oil for Frying Onions

Instructions

  • In a mixing bowl, take flour, add yeast, salt and sugar to it. Make a well in center and add water slowly and gradually.
  • Mix the flour and  keep it for 10 minutes.
  • Now add infused olive oil and herbs and start kneading the dough. Knead until you get smooth dough, take about 10-15 minutes when doing with hand.
  • If using stand mixer, knead it for 10 minutes on medium speed, then take out the dough on work surface and ead with hands for another 5 minutes.
  • Take a bowl, oil it nicely and transfer the dough to it.Cover it with a damp towel or cling film and keep it at a warm place to proof.
  • Once the dough doubles up in size(1-2 hrs) approx. 1.5 hrs, transfer on the work surface and knead it lightly.
  • Preheat oven at 400°F or 200°C
  • Grease pan with oil,that you are using to bake focaccia, transfer the dough to it and lightly spread the dough onto the pan. Or, roughly shape it with hand  for the rustic look. Cover again the pan or bread with cling film and let it sit for another 20-30 minutes. It will again rise and double up.
  • Now lightly knock the dough down with knuckles or make indentations with fingers. Do not press too tightly on the dough as it with inflate it. Make dimples, add toppings.
  • Drizzle more (1-2 tbsp) infused EVOO before baking.
  • Bake at 400 ºF or 200 ºC for 15-20 minutes. See the bread rising beautifully. Take it out when it starts to just getting brown.

For Infused Olive Oil

  • Take EVVO in a pan and heat it till warm enough. Add the fresh rosemary sprigs or any other herb that you are using. You can also add fresh garlic cloves for the garlic flavour. I did not use it as I like to add garlic powder for baking in breads and  pizza bases which I add directly in dough.
  • Keep the oil covered, till it cools down and as the aroma of Rosemary. Filter it and keep it in a glass bottle with an air-tight lid or cap. Use as required.

For Toppings..

  • Wash and pat dry the cherries. Cut into half or quarters and take out the seeds.
    To caramelize onions, thinly slice the onions and saute in oil in a a pan till light brown. Add as topping when ready to bake.

Notes

Substitutes

Any other fresh herb like Thyme, Basil can be used  or incase you do not have fresh herbs used the dried ones.
I like to use Instant Yeast for baking, you can use, Active Dry yeast also, but first activate it before adding to flour. check out these Bread Kulcha recipe where I have explained how to use Dry Active yeast.
In place of fresh Cherries one can use strawberries or any other topping like cherry tomatoes,peppers or sauteed mushrooms. Or you can skip and making it just the Classic version without any toppings.
Instead of Whole Wheat flour(WWF) you can use Maida/APF too, or both in 1:1 ratio. When using only ApF adjust the amount of water used as WWF absorbs more water than APF. For every 200g or 1 Cup of APF use 120ml of Water.

Do try this Focaccia bread with Rosemary and Cherries. It can be served as an appetizer in your parties and get together. Kids love to take this soft and moist bread with their favorite toppings for lunch. Pair it up with this cheesy dip Cheesy dip with Herbs. One to thing to remember that the texture of Whole Wheat Bread is denser than the one with All-purpose flour, but it more healthier option with compromising on the taste of the bread. It is equally delicious and yumm as the ones you get at your favorite cafe or bakery!!

Do give me your feedback about the post and recipe whenever you make it.

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Thanks for stopping by and keep coming back!!

 

 

 

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Author: Swati

Some who believes 'EAT WELL, READ DAILY, TRAVEL OFTEN AND LAUGH KHUL KE'!!! Hi!! Swati here!!! Chef, Chocolatier, food admirer, reader, love to travel, listen to music, Bollywood and shoot nature and food pics!! Welcome to my Foodtrails and join me in my food adventure!!

14 thoughts

  1. Loved this fresh cherry and rosemary foccasia Swaty ! I baked one last week with cherry tomatoes using WWF just the way you used. Such a gulit free and aromatic treat this is !

  2. Kiddo wants bread and I cannot knead much so this is an ideal match for us. Will definitely try making this delicious rosemary scented focaccia. It will make a great change from the cheese loaded pizzas. Extremly flavourful.

  3. I can imagine the this focaccia bursting out with so many flavors.Loved the use of cherries ,rosemary and infused Olive Oil.

  4. Focaccia is very recipe to me swaty, it looks very delicious. Loved the part of using whole wheat flour and fresh cherries and rosemary. You clearly explained it with step by step pics and awsome presentation 👌

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