Do you ever have those days where time seems to fly and nothing gets done? Ok I know everyone does but today is not my day. First up I turned off my alarm and went back to sleep instead of jumping up and heading out to the gym like I normally do. This does not make for a great day because I spend the whole day thinking ‘oh I could go this afternoon’ ‘I’ll just go for a walk’ etc etc which results in me doing nothing 9 out of 10 times.
Then my sewing machine jammed and I spent an hour fiddling with it to no avail (if anyone has any tips I’d love to hear them please). I was on hold to the bank for 20 minutes only to have it cut out when they answered and it’s now 1pm and my to do list doesn’t have very much blue (colour for the week) highlighter on it which means not much has been done. Yes today I am a big whinger and could quite happily crawl back into bed until tomorrow.
One thing I could manage even on a day like this, is whipping up a batch of five-minute focaccia. It’s yet another easy bread recipe from the lovely Chris at The Cafe Sucre Farine and it’s sure to pull you out of your wo-is-me day should you be having one. I made a batch up on Valentine’s Day and cooked some in heart shapes then made the rest up a few days later into little rolls. It’s so easy to make and very yummy.
Bread making really isn’t tricky. As long as you have good flour and some yeast you can make all sorts of things.
Start by combining the oil, sugar, salt, yeast and water in a large bowl.
Add the flour to the bowl and stir it through with a wooden spoon.
Once the dough has all come together, cover the bowl loosely and leave it to rest for 1.5 – 2 hours. It needs to rise then start to deflate then it’s ready to be used.
At this stage you can either get it ready for baking or cover the dough and refrigerate it. It will last up to 4 days in the fridge and you can just pinch of as much as you need and use it day-by-day. I used some at the time and saved some for later.
When you’re ready to use the dough, flour the bench and place your piece of dough on top of it. If you want to make shapes, press the dough out to about 3 or 4cm thick and then use a cookie cutter or a knife to cut out shapes. Alternatively, just shape the dough with your hands.
I shaped mine into little discs and poked some holes in them. It works best if you leave them to rise for about an hour before baking but it also works to bake them straight away.
Brush the dough generously with oil and then sprinkle each one with sea salt and rosemary. Bake them for 10-15 minutes (or until golden) in a 210C fan-forced oven.
Leave the bread to cool on a wire rack.
I think they’re best served warm but they’re just as good at room temperature. A little bit of butter doesn’t hurt either. Enjoy!
Five minute focaccia recipe from The Cafe Sucre Farine
- 2-¾ cups lukewarm water
- 1-½ tbsp granulated yeast
- 1 tbsp sea salt
- 2 tbsp sugar (I only used one)
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 6-½ cups white bakers flour
- sea salt and fresh rosemary to top the bread
Add the flour to the bowl and stir it through with a wooden spoon until it is all mixed in.
Cover the bowl loosely and leave it to rest at room temperature until it rises and begins to collapse. This will take about 1.5 to 2 hours. I left mine for a little longer than 2 hours.
You can shape the bread now or refrigerate it for later. The dough will keep for 4-5 days in the fridge.
Pre-heat the oven to 210C fan-forced and grease an oven tray with olive oil. Alternatively use baking paper with a little spray of oil.
The dough can be rolled out for shaped bread (use a cutter or a knife) or just break of bits and flatten them out like I did. The dough can be prepared and baked straight away or left to rise again.
To prepare the bread for the oven, brush it generously with olive oil and then sprinkle with sea salt and rosemary.
Bake the bread for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown.
Transfer the bread to a wire rack to cool.