Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Whole Wheat Focaccia

I think I've had this blank document up for about 2 hours now, trying to write this post. In the meantime, I've read the news, listened to a Christmas song, bought new running sneakers, and watched an episode of Sex and City (why, oh why can't the movies be as good as the show??). But write this post I did not. So since I could not come up with anything to write, I decided to write about how I could not come up with anything to write.

Truth is, I think I'm all writed-out. Yesterday, after weeks months of writing, editing, writing, editing, and even more writing and editing, I FINALLY submitted my thesis. Hallelujah is all I can say. For now that is. Until my committee members read it, find a million things wrong with it, and ask me to re-write it, edit it, rewrite it and edit...(please pray for me that this doesn't happen).

I now have a new respect for book writers and editors. How do they do it? More times than I'd like to admit, I'd get ready to proofread, red pen in hand, only to find myself...asleep. Face down. On my thesis. With a red ink stain on my cheek.

Don't get me wrong, I am in no way putting down my writing or my research, it's all very interesting (to me at least), but I find few things more boring than reading and re-reading something that I have written, read and re-read about a gazillion times. I'm just saying.

I have been wanting to post about this recipe for a while now - ever since Nancy was here (yes, that long!). It's probably the simplest yeast bread you can make and super tasty. The best thing about it, is the countless ways to flavor it with various combinations of herbs, cheese, and other fixin's: thyme and roasted garlic, caramelized onions and gruyere, or whatever else you fancy. This bread is a palette for your culinary imagination. Start painting!

Whole Wheat Focaccia Bread (adapted from allrecipes)

1 tablespoon honey
2 cups warm water
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup diced onion

3 cups all-purpose flour, plus a bit more as needed
2 cups whole wheat flour
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh chopped rosemary
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon kosher salt

1. In a large bowl, dissolve honey in the warm water, then sprinkle yeast over the top. Let stand for 5 minutes until the yeast softens and begins to foam. Stir in 1 tablespoon of salt, 1 tablespoon olive oil, onions, and flour and form into a dough. Knead on a well floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes.
2. Lightly oil a large bowl, place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 20 minutes.
3. Preheat oven to 415 degrees F (215 degrees C).
4. Place dough onto oiled baking sheet, and flatten to cover the whole sheet evenly. Use the tips of your fingers to make indentations all over the dough spaced about 1 inch apart (I forgot to do this). Drizzle the focaccia with 3 tablespoons olive oil, then sprinkle rosemary, Parmesan cheese, and remaining 1 tablespoon of kosher salt over the top. Let rise for 10 minutes.
4. Bake in preheated oven 20 minutes until golden brown.


  1. I've been looking for a really good focaccia bread and bonus points because it's whole wheat! Seriously looks fantastic.

    Shockingly, i too get writer's block on occasion. I haven't thought to write about my writer's block yet though. Hmmm.

    I'm sure your thesis is awesome! Good luck babe!

  2. Wow I have never tried whole wheat focaccia, looks wonderful:)

  3. I was waiting to see what is next yummy food. The bread came out so good, specially the onion on the top.

  4. Whole wheat focaccia? Wow, sounds good, esp because I do love the nutty texture of whole wheat, as well as the spongy texture of regular foccacia.

    Best of luck on your thesis! I'm sure it'll be great! I understand how agonizing the process is, though...glad it's over!

  5. mmmmmmmmmmmmm...che buona!!!!

  6. This looks wholesome. nothing is better than homemade. I'm sure it tastes superb. Thanks for sharing. MaryMoh at

  7. i can definitely commiserate--when i finally turned in my thesis, i didn't want to read or write again for a good, long while. :)
    this bread is gorgeous, and you're right--the variations are infinite!

  8. Congratulations!! Your thesis is written. It's out of your hands now, so take a deeeeep breath and try not to worry too much about what May go wrong (do as I say, not as I do.) :-)

    I love focaccia! This recipe actually doesn't seem too difficult, especially for someone with a fear of yeast. That sandwich has my name on it btw. :D

    And I'm with you on the Sex & the City movies. I'll stick with the 25 minute versions.

  9. I can't even comprehend writing a thesis. I can barely get past writing my return address on an envelope. Congratulations on your accomplishment.

    And the focaccia? You know how I love my whole wheat. It looks fantastic!

  10. Don't know why I haven't baked focaccia. It looks easy and delicious! Good luck on your thesis!

  11. Hey Ms. Meanie, I'll pray for you! I wouldn't want that to happen either, as I'm really not the best writer or editor. And what a pain even for a great writer. My Dad worked for a big newspaper as the senior editor for almost 7 years, and he also said it was, well, not good (smile)!
    This whole wheat focaccia sounds so good. I love the idea of it-so much more 'real'.

  12. msmeanie - congrats on getting ur thesis done - u sound relieved! Can tell by post! My husband and I love focaccia. The photos as usual look lovely!

  13. No wonder you're all written out! Congratulations on getting your thesis done!

    I've never made focaccia and have no excuses 'cause I love it. And it make the best panini! I love that this is whole wheat, which I think always gives bread a nuttier flavor plus being good for you!
    Great recipe. Maybe this will push me into making it for the fist time!

  14. I just absolutely love focaccia bread. Tried it for the first time last year and fell in love with it immediately.

  15. You just made yeast breads seem a lot less intimidating, Ms. Meanie. Thanks for sharing this :)

  16. This looks like a great whole wheat version- I don't think I've ever made one with whole wheat, so on the list it goes! I must be behind on my cct reading, since I just noticed your new banner, which I love...Congratulations on the completion of your thesis, too! That is quite an accomplishment!

  17. Every single one of your recipes is amazing and your blog posts and pictures make me want to start cooking / baking immediately.
    Focaccia is one of these really special foods for me, it just reminds me of Village Bakery bread, which is soooo yummy. I wish I could replicate their focaccia at home. But as a replacement, yours looks equally good and a lot more healthy :) So thanks, once again!