There are few things that remind me of my grandmother Philomena more than making focaccia with her. We would be in her kitchen when it came out of the oven and within minutes, it would be gone. Hours of waiting for it to rise and poof! We would watch as it was quickly disappearing from the jelly roll pan she used. The aroma of fresh herbs lingered longer than the fabulous bread itself.
Her version had multiple fresh herbs mixed into the dough and we often topped it with sliced onions and tomatoes that would caramelize a bit in the hot oven. It was one of my father's favorite things she made and he would often request that I would make it as well since we lived across the country from her. I was probably ten years old when I learned. It is a fairly simple recipe even though it uses yeast. Yeast is easy to use as long as the water is warm but not hot. 100-110 degrees F is ideal. Basically if you can feel that it is warm but not hot, you should be okay.
One of the things I love about focaccia is the crisp outside that contrasts with the chewy inside. I thought I would experiment with a small portion of dough and use a waffle iron to cook it. Waffle irons get hot enough and I figured it was worth a try. Let me tell you that this could be the best way to cook focaccia dough. The whole outside gets very crisp while the inside is perfectly cooked and the waffle shape allows for catching some of the flaked sea salt. It is SO good.
My version of the recipe is fairly simple and should be made a day ahead of time. You can really taste the difference in breads and pizza dough when they are baked a day after being made. It is much more developed and delicious. If you just can't wait a day, you will have to wait 2 hours for the dough to rise and then another 20 minutes before you can cook it. Good thing is that the dough can rise on it's own and doesn't need to be watched. I really think you will enjoy this version of focaccia. It makes a great appetizer if you have friends coming over. It's best served warm, right out of the waffle iron.
You can find the recipe here: Waffle Iron Rosemary & Sea Salt Focaccia
Home cook, Mom, wife, and crafty creative, Mandy is from California and has traveled the world and lived in lots of places. She has fallen in love with Dallas, TX and calls it home.