Focaccia means a lot of different things in different Italian regions, to me it means a thick oily pizza that can be eaten plain, with rosemary, onions and other simple toppings that don't cover the taste of the focaccia itself.
One of the things that I love the most about this recipe is that it's super easy. Usually the first time I try a new recipe it doesn't come out perfect (I often fail haha) while this was amazing from the very first time!!
Also it should be pretty easy to make it "zero waste" as most of it's ingredients can usually be found in bulk or with plastic-free packaging. Unfortunately it is not the case for me as there is no bulk option where I live, so to at least diminish the packaging I buy the salt and sugar in big plastic bags, the yeast in a tin with plastic top and the flour in paper packaging.
The olive oil is the one that me and Giulio (my boyfriend) bought from a local producer back in Italy before moving to England! It comes in glass bottles that we then reuse to keep our tap water once filtered (using charcoal sticks) and the "cold green tea" (made with our French press using the green tea that we buy in bulk from our local market)!
Back to the focaccia, even if it is supposed to be eaten "white" (without sauces or heavy toppings) I often use it also as a base for normal pizza, topping it with homemade tomato sauce and some mozzarella!
I do it out of laziness as in this way I can make half of it "margherita" and the other half with just some onions, without having to make to separate things!
I would suggest to eat the focaccia when still warm, but if you want to save some for later or to use it instead of bread in the following days I would say to at least re-heat it in the oven before eating it, otherwise it will lose it's amazingness!
Anyway let's get into it..!
350 g White bread flour
1 tbsp Salt
3 tbsp Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
2 tsp Dried bread yeast
2 tsp Sugar
200 ml Warm water
In a large bowl mix the flour with the salt
And the sugar. (I use brown/cane sugar because that's what we have but normal sugar is fine)
Add the oil
And then slowly add the warm water
Knead the dough until it becomes elastic.
Cover it with a tea towel and keep it to rise in a warm place for 1 hour (a good idea is to pre-heat the oven at 50°C, switch it off and then put the focaccia dough inside).
Once the hour has passed, knead the dough for about one minute to eliminate the air.
Roll out the dough on a baking tray greased with olive oil.
Cover again and leave it to rise for another 20 minutes.
Then, with your fingers, create some deep dimples on the dough and let it rise for the last time for 10 minutes.
Meanwhile preheat the oven at 200°C.
Add some salt and oil and put it in the oven for 25 minutes.
I usually take it out after 15-20 minutes to add the onions on top so that they cook slightly but don't get burned.
If you're adding rosemary or other herbs you can put them directly on the raw dough before cooking it!
And it's done.. Buon Appetito!!