I absolutely love this recipe, and I have had Richard Bertinet show me how to make this bread so many times, I think I am the perfect person to simplify it.
So you will be needing:
500g strong flour, 10g yeast (fresh is always better but you can always use dried), 10g salt (I prefer to use sea salt, the nice stuff in the tubs, leaves a better taste compared to table salt) and 350g of water.
If you are using dried yeast, then add your 10g of yeast to your water, and leave to sit for 10 minutes. This ensures that the yeast is ‘activated’ and will get to work straight away in your dough.
To start you dough, add your flour, salt and fresh yeast into the bowl. It is important that you do not let your yeast and salt touch each other until you are ready to start your dough.
You can do this next step using your hands, but for the best result you will need a plastic scraper. Make a ‘well’ in to your flour and pour in your water or yeast and water. Using your scraper or your hand, go around the bowl to bring the flour into the centre, slowly creating a ball of dough.
Once a ball is formed, you need to work it onto your available surface. If you have a scraper you will not need any flour down, if you are using your hands, I would suggest putting down just a little.
Using your scraper (the flat side) or the side of your hand, chase your ball of dough around the table until the dough no longer sticks to the table and leaves no residue. When you have done this, you will have to start to create the gluten bonds in your dough. To do this you will want to work the dough, whilst holding on to the top end of your dough, lift it up and slap the half of the dough you are not holding onto the table. Then with the flick of your wrist, fold the dough you was just holding back onto the top of the new dough ball. This ensures that the top of the dough is always on top.
If I have completely confused you I am sorry! But here is a portal to my YouTube video with a quick tutorial on what I mean by slapping the dough 🙂
When you have a smooth dough ball, lightly grease a large bowl to put your dough in so it can prove.
When you have put your dough ball in the greased bowl, cover it with cling film and leave to rest for a minimum of 1 hour.
When your dough has risen a substantial amount, transfer your dough into a tray for baking, you will knock a lot of the air out when doing this, so I could suggest to leave the dough for at least another hour, but the longer the better really.
I made two doughs so I could make a salt and pepper Foccacia and a olive, red onion and basil Focaccia. I left them to rise some more (but a don’t was made in my olive focaccia because my partner piled some stuff on top of it not knowing what it was and it was covered with a tea towel) then baked them at 250 until they were a beautiful colour on the top and sounded hollow when I tapped the bottom, so around 20 minutes but it depends on the size tray you are using.
Hope you enjoyed this, and it was in depth enough without confusing anyone! Happy baking guys 🙂