Thursday 31 August 2023

Cooking Focaccia With Fire - Bread In The Pizza Oven

On Bank Holiday we had a bit of an easy day and decided to lots of cooking and baking. We decided to have some friends over as well to have pizza from the earth oven. 

I set our Middlest to lighting the fire and getting it going. She was very proud of it, only asking me to help her push it back into the main part of the oven. she maintained it all afternoon as well, stoking it often. 

While that was going on we were also making pizza dough (two lots in the bread maker) and we decided to make some focaccia from scratch. 

I'd been watching some videos about Proper Italian food on YouTube and wanted to make some really traditional focaccia, the type you make with a really wet dough. I turned to Bake with Jack for a recipe (as all of the ones of his I've tried have been great). It's quite an involved process as although there's no kneading you do have to fold it 4 separate times, 45 minutes apart. We definitely needed a timer.

What it did make was a super soft and silky dough, not like a normal bread dough at all. 

Middlest also diced up lots of rosemary and left it to infuse with oil when we started to make the dough. We poured it on top and into the dimples left by our fingers. It looked amazing. 

We cooked the pizzas in the fierce heat of the oven, but once the flames had died down a little and the embers didn't glow quite so much I put the bread in. Not quite all the way back, but under the chimney area towards the door. I cooked it in a tray, not sure if I should use a trivet or not. 

It took about 25 minutes to cook but I had to turn it quite a few times to stop it catching. 

I pulled it out and left it to cool under a cloth. My daughter came back from playing down at the tree, peaked under the cloth and her face was a picture. She was so pleased with it! 

The bread was unreal. We cook lots of bread but this was very different, a different more complex texture, huge air bubbles. I doubt it's that good for you as it's basically fried with all the oil in and on it, but tastes amazing. 

We ate it the next day for lunch, but half went in the freezer for lunch boxes when everyone is back at school (not me though), my wife likes focaccia as it saves making sandwiches, the children take a small pot of oil and balsamic with them when they have it (honestly I despair at what little snobs they are when it comes to food) to dip their bread in! 

Who else loves making bread from scratch?


  1. I've only recently started making Focaccia but you are right at how different it is and so delicious

    1. It's often our go-to if we have guests for lunch as it saves making sandwiches. But in the past I've used a more traditional bread method, this one changed the texture slightly. Having a dough I have to pop back to works quite well when I'm doing lots of sanding as it gives me a reason to give my hands a rest (or a change at least).

  2. My hubby makes bread at home, he has made focaccia, but we can get it locally made, we love all the different breads and dipping oils.

    1. We have some incredible bread locally, by Peter Cooks Bread, but I can't afford it that often, although I have been a course there which was awesome. Yesterday I did the most middle class shop ever, going in for some different olive oils and vinegars for dipping! I;m such a snob when it comes to our food!

  3. I'm not really into making bread but I love to eat warm bread right out of the oven. When my wife makes it, I have to restrain myself or half the loaf will be gone shortly. The only bread I make is once or twice a year when I get the hankering for what we refer to as "English Muffins". Not sure if they are actually a thing over there or not as I can't recall seeing them in my trips to England. But I have a bread recipe that mimics their unique taste.

  4. That looks absolutely scrumptious! I used to make bread from scratch, but now that I have to avoid gluten, that's in the past. Just the smell from the oven as it is baking is enough to set my mouth to watering. Enjoy some for me!

  5. That Earth oven is a work of art. Fair play to you Kev.


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