Tag Archives: Genova

Genoese Sage Focaccia! (more a tutorial than a recipe)

This focaccia alla salvia, a typical Genoese focaccia, is very aromatic, wonderful served with cheese, soups and cold cuts. To make this focaccia you follow the focaccia recipe method and then you add the fresh sage at the end. You have to chop the sage really finely, in order to blend it nicely with the dough. The focaccia dough also needs to rise for several hours, so we are going to make a starter that you can make in advance, in order to make the preparation method a little more manageable.

The longer the dough rises, the better the focaccia will become, so don’t rush it! This is why in the traditional method we repeat the leavening process a few times…However you can shorten the process by skipping the second leavening (step 3) and mixing all the flour together straight away, if you don’t have much time.

DSC_0062

I suggest you make the focaccia during the weekends (or in your spare time), as it needs to be looked after during the preparation method…It is a long process but it’s worth it!!!

Note. To make the starter there are two options: you can use normal yeast or you can use sourdough.

All you need (for the entire method).
250-300 g plain flour (depending if you use sourdough or yeast)
250 g durum wheat semolina flour
12 g yeast (or 50 g of sourdough)
a big bunch of fresh sage, very finally chopped
fine sea salt
lots of extra virgin olive oil
water
a little sugar
baking sheet
a baking tray (24 cm x 28 cm)
a bowl
cling film

Note. I am going to divide the ingredients and the preparation method into 4 main steps.

DSC_0004

HOW TO MAKE SAGE FOCACCIA.

Step 1. Make the starter

For the starter with yeast

Ingredients

100 g plain flour

12 g yeast

water

a little sugar

Method with yeast.

Mix the yeast with a few spoons of warm water, a little flour and a little sugar. When it forms some bubbles add the rest of the flour, more water and work it until you get a small dough (keep it quite moist). Put the dough into a small bowl, then cover it with cling film and let rise overnight at room temperature.

For the starter with sourdough (natural yeast).

Ingredients

50 g plain flour

50 g sourdough

water

a little sugar

Method with sourdough.

Mix the flour, a pinch of sugar and the sourdough with some water, until you get a soft and moist dough. Place in a small bowl, then cover it with cling film and let rise overnight.

DSC_9944

DSC_9948

Step 2. The first leavening.

Ingredients

the starter we prepared earlier (with yeast or sourdough)

100 g of plain flour

100 g of durum wheat semolina flour

water

a little sugar (to help the leavening process)

Method.

In the morning, mix the starter with 100 g of plain flour, 100 g of durum wheat semolina flour and a little sugar, then add enough water to make a soft dough. Work well, then place the dough in a bowl, cover it with a cling film and let rise until it doubles in volume.

DSC_9950

DSC_9985

Step 3. The second leavening.

Ingredients

the dough we prepared earlier

100 g plain flour

100 g durum wheat semolina four

water

a little sugar

Method.

Take the dough and add the flour with a little sugar, then mix with enough water and work well. Cover with cling film and let rise until it doubles in volume.

DSC_9991

Step 4. Adding all the ingredients and baking.

Ingredients

the dough we prepared earlier

50 g of durum wheat semolina flour

a big bunch of fresh sage, very finely chopped

fine sea salt

50 ml extra virgin olive oil (and you’ll need some more to drizzle before baking)

100 ml of water

DSC_9994

DSC_0005

Method.

1. This is the final step! Take the dough and mix it with 50 g durum wheat semolina flour, finally chopped fresh sage leaves, some fine sea salt (but we are going to add more later) and mix just enough to blend the ingredients. Add 50 ml of extra virgin olive oil, previously mixed with 100 ml of water. Mix everything (just enough, don’t overwork it or you’ll lose the leavening strength of the dough).

DSC_0009

2. Take a baking tray, line with baking paper, drizzle with olive oil and place the dough so that it covers the tray. Let rise for about an hour.

DSC_0011

3. Once it has risen, press the dough with the tip of your fingers in order to create wells. Drizzle with more olive oil mixed with water, season with plenty of salt and bake at 200° C (392 °F) for 30-35 minutes.

DSC_0023

DSC_0030

DSC_0060

DSC_0073

Advertisements

Traditional Recipe: Focaccia al Formaggio di Recco

DSC_2740

This focaccia al formaggio di Recco (Cheese Focaccia from Recco), is one of the most appreciated dishes we have in Liguria. Many bakeries and pizza places make this amazing focaccia, but only a few really excel in this recipe.

This focaccia is basically made with two almost transparent sheets of pastry, made with flour, olive oil, salt and no yeast. The cheese is then arranged and sealed between the pastry layers. The result should’t be either too oily or dry, the pastry should be crunchy on top and the cheese should be very fresh and creamy in the middle. Sometimes I add milk to the cheese to make it a little extra creamy. But you really have to use only fresh crescenza or stracchino, because no other cheese will taste as good as these cheeses in this recipe!

DSC_2705

The preparation method will requires some care, especially when you roll out the dough to make it thin. Yes, to make a thin layer might be tricky the first few times, however after some practice it will get easier and the pastry thinner.

Focaccia al formaggio di Recco.

Ingredients

For 6 servings

250 g (8.8 oz) plain flour

500 g (17.6 oz) of Italian soft cheese crescenza or stracchino (but you can double this amount, if you want more cheese inside the focaccia)

extra virgin olive oil

freshly ground sea salt

flour for dusting

water

Method.

1. On a work surface or a table, place the flour, then add the salt, 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and enough water to make a soft and smooth dough. Knead well.

DSC_2611

DSC_2613

DSC_2620

2. Dust the work surface with some flour and roll out the pastry using a rolling pin. Stretch the pastry further with your hands, until you get two almost see-through sheets (careful not to break them).

DSC_2653

DSC_2636

DSC_2634

3. Place a sheet of pastry on a large baking tray, greased with extra virgin olive oil.  Arrange the cheese (cut into pieces) on top of the pastry, then cover everything with the other sheet of pastry.

DSC_2649

DSC_2658

4. Seal the edges of the pastry together, so that the cheese will stay inside when it melts.

DSC_2662

DSC_2671

5. Slightly pierce the pastry (only pierce the top layer, not the base). Bake at 200 ° C (392° F) until the pastry is golden and crispy. Salt and serve straight away.

DSC_2679

DSC_2677

DSC_2740

DSC_2760

Focaccia al formaggio di Recco.

Ingredienti

Per 6 persone

250 g di farina 00

500 g di crescenza o stracchino (potete raddoppiare la dose di formaggio, se volete più formaggio dentro la vostra focaccia)

olio extra vergine d’oliva

sale

farina per infarinare la spianatoia

acqua q. b.

Preparazione.

1. Su una spianatoia, disponete la farina a fontana e aggiungete il sale, 2 cucchiai d’olio e l’acqua necessaria per ottenere un impasto omogeneo. Impastate bene tutto.

2. Infarinate la spianatoia e stendete l’impasto con il matterello. Tendete ulteriormente l’impasto con le mani, per ottenere due sfoglie il più sottile possibile (senza romperle).

3. Stendete una sfoglia su una teglia grande, precedentemente unta con 2 cucchiai d’olio. Disponete il formaggio fresco (tagliato a pezzi) sulla sfoglia e ricoprite tutto con la seconda sfoglia.

4. Pressate insieme i bordi delle sfoglie, in modo da sigillare la pasta e non far uscire il formaggio.

5. Bucate leggermente la superficie della pasta, facendo attenzione a non bucare la base della focaccia. Infornate a 200°C, fino ad ottenere una focaccia croccante. Salate e servite subito.

DSC_2773