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Fired up by gas

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

These holes in the foccacia remind me of the tunnels made by termites in the base of the massive tamarind tree next to my childhood house. Not such a nice image now, but the holes in the anthill fascinated me then just as these holes in the bread fascinate me now.
This foccacia is from Dan Lepard's The Handmade Loaf – he calls it olive oil flatbread. The top is a bit darker than the picture in his book, but the beautiful pockets of air are quite similar. Only thing, the middle of my flatbread domed up a little, causing it to be not quite a flat bread, and I blame that on the uneven heat in my oven.
Dan Lepard's recipe has the addition of a white leaven as well as malt powder in the rather wet dough. He explains in this post (with recipe) on foccacia and another one on ciabatta in his blog about the factors that affect crumb aeration: water content and sufficient working of the dough during mixing – folding and stretching the dough gently help create that open texture.
Folding the dough during the first stage of kneading. This is repeated another two times.
This time, the top got a simple drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkling of coarse sea salt, but I'd like to try a topping of oil and tomatoes next time.

Here's more bread:


  1. Looks good to me! Also wanted to thank you for what I'd recommend as an example of a "best practice" food blog: reference a recipe but give links to where the author has chosen to put it, rather than ignore copyright and cut & paste it. Also great that you concentrate on your own thoughts and photos, and as a result, create something original that's entirely yours, rather than borrowed.
    Best wishes,
    Davuid Whitehouse, editor, "Short & Sweet" and

    1. Thank you so much Mr Whitehouse! I've learnt a lot, especially about bread, from Dan Lepard's writings and the website.
      My copy of Short and Sweet is on the way and I'm sure I will be baking a lot from it too!


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