Preparing yeasted breads can seem like a complicated task, but we promise you, this recipe is as simple as it gets. Even if you’ve never baked bread before, you’ll find it surprisingly easy to make focaccia.
Focaccia is an Italian flatbread that dates back to ancient Roman times where it was baked directly in front of fire - the word focaccia meaning “hearth bread”. A generous amount of olive oil gives the bread a crisp crust while helping the inside to remain perfectly soft and chewy.
A wide variety of ingredients can be used to season and top focaccia bread. In this recipe, we use just two: Olive oil and Zaatar. You may be asking yourself what is zaatar? It's a Mediterranean spice mix with mainstay ingredients (if premium brand) of wild thyme herb (native to Middle East region), sumac, and sesame seeds. It offers limitless culinary uses, and even health benefits. Read hear about zaatar benefits.
Focaccia is best enjoyed fresh out of the oven and makes the perfect accompaniment to soups and stews, but our favorite way to serve it is as an appetizer with olive oil and Zaatar for dipping. Leftovers can easily be reheated or toasted…or try slicing horizontally and using it for sandwiches!
Zaatar Focaccia Bread
Recipe Category: Bread, Appetizer
Recipe Cuisine: Mediterranean, Italian
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins
Total Time: 30 mins
Serving Size: 1 piece (1/12 of bread)
Calories: 89, Fat: 9g, Protein: 0g, Carbs: 2g, Fiber:0g
½ cup olive oil
2 tablespoons Zaatar
1 cup warm water
1 packet active dry yeast
1 teaspoon honey
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
Additional olive oil and Zaatar for dipping, if desired
1- In a small bowl, or measuring cup, mix together the olive oil and Zaatar.
2 - Combine the warm water, yeast, and honey in the bowl of a stand mixer and let stand for 5 minutes.
3 - Add one cup of flour and ½ cup of the Zaatar olive oil to the yeast mixture and mix until the flour is moistened. Let stand for 5 minutes.
4 - Add the salt and remaining flour and knead, using the dough hook attachment, until smooth, about 3-5 minutes. The dough will be slightly sticky. If not using a stand mixer, knead by hand on a lightly floured surface for 5-7 minutes.
5 - Transfer the dough to a well-oiled bowl, cover with a towel, and let rise for 1 hour.
6 - After 1 hour, preheat the oven to 450°F and grease a 9 x 13” pan with olive oil.
7 - Press the dough into the prepared pan. Use your fingers or the handle of a wooden spoon to dimple the dough throughout.
8 - Spread the remaining Zaatar olive oil over the dough and bake for 18-20 minutes, until golden brown.
9 - Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly on a wire rack.