I really thought I knew all the important stuff about home-made focaccia: make a fluffy yeast dough, add tons of olive oil, bake, the end – this is what I would do whenever there was an urgent demand for it. Filling a focaccia had never occurred to me before I recently learned about Gorgonzola-filled focaccia (basically you roll out two layers of dough, smear the Gorgonzola in between, seal the edges and bake, much as you would a calzone). This apparently kicked open some doors in my creative mind, and since I’m kind of smitten with baking stuff in the shape you see in the picture, this is what happened in my kitchen yesterday.
Fabulous Focaccia Buns
I was working, as I often am, with leftovers: there was some lemon-and-basil pesto I had made the week before, I had sun-dried tomatoes and some parmigiano already grated.
So basically I rolled out the dough, spread the pesto on it really thinly, strewed the cut up tomatoes and the grated cheese on top, and cut it in three about 12 cm wide, long strips. These I rolled up lengthwise into three ’sausages‘, then cut them in 3 cm long sections, which I set in a round baking dish lined with baking paper. After generously sloshing on some more olive oil, I put it in the preheated oven at 160 °C.
Btw, to make the dough, I used fresh yeast (1/2 cube), approximately 500 g spelt flour, as well as 1 cup of warm water, 2/3 cup of olive oil, 1 1/2 TBSP sea salt and 1 TBSP sugar.
The lemony pesto was made with very little garlic (no more than 1/2 clove), three 3 cm long pieces of lemon peel, as well as the usual mix of basil, parmigiano, pine nuts, salt, pepper and olive oil. I think I also added a bit of arugula and fresh parsley, a handful of each. It was a nice pesto :-).
The little morsels you see up there went away like the proverbial hotcakes at my Fair Planning Committee meeting yesterday night. There were three pregnant ladies present, who happily munched on the small buns ;-). They made for an excellent snack, and I will experiment with other fillings in the future.
We’re on the (hopefully) last leg of the current heatwave (temperature’s supposed to even out into a reasonable 20 odd °C next week), and I’m waiting for response on a test translation I submitted this week. I’m probably not the cheapest option they have (rarely am, with my not exactly exotic language pair that is offered by many, many colleagues around the world, some of whom live in countries where they can survive on a fraction of what you need in Western Europe), but I’d be really thrilled if they decided to work with me, as it would allow me to go (if only vicariously) on two really epic hikes in the Himalaya. Fingers crossed!
As for now, I’m stuck with this:and of course this little dude:who loves the lake-shore but not the water ;-). And yes, life could be way, way worse.
Have a wonderful weekend, everybody.