21.4.11

Wild Garlic Foccacia Bread - Recipes


Yes, yes, and another very loud yes.

You'll love this recipe if you are a lover of Italian food, Bread making, have a glut of Wild Garlic or are just hungry. There is nothing more satisfying than making your own bread and Foccacia flavoured with the wonderful Wild Garlic is a winner.

Wild Garlic Foccacia Bread

Ingredients

500g Strong White Bread Flour
5g Yeast
10g Maldon Salt (extra for the topping)
Black Pepper
325ml warm water
Glug of Olive Oil
200g Wild Garlic Leaves and Flowers
100g Almonds (Finely chopped)

The hardest thing about making bread is the waiting. Waiting for the yeast to do their work so you can eat it!! Bread is easy to make as long as you give it time; the right amount of time kneading, the right amount of time to rise, the right amount of time to cook.

Finely shred about a 1/4 of your Wild Garlic ready to put through mix. Place your flour, yeast, salt, warm water, shredded Wild Garlic and a good glug of Olive Oil into a mixing bowl and thoroughly combine. Pour the mix out onto a clean work surface and begin the kneading process. Kneading is easy, form a ball of dough, use one hand to secure the edge of the dough ball to the work surface, then using the palm of your other hand push the dough away from you to stretch the flour fibres. Knead the dough for 10 minutes, no less! Then put the dough back into a clean bowl and allow to rise in a warm place such as on top of your oven for an hour or so (until the mix has at least doubled in size).

Prepare your cooking tray, you want a non stick shallow tray (about 25cm x 35cm), oil the tray thoroughly with Olive Oil.

When your Foccacia dough has doubled in size (30 mins to an hour in a warm kitchen), knock it back a little and then place it in the prepared tray. Now you need to make the Foccacia fit the tray, evenly pushing the mix into a large flat square the size of your tray - make sure the dough is evenly spread and makes it into all of the corners. Now allow the bread to rise again for another 30 minutes to an hour. Pre-heat your oven to 250 degrees.

Whilst this second rising is happening prepare your remaining Wild Garlic. Simply wash and dry the leaves, reserving the flowers and then finely chop (just the leaves). Also take your Almonds (if you have whole Almonds) and very finely slice /chop these too.

When the Foccacia has risen again use your thumb to gently (but firmly) make a pattern over the surface, these small pools will retain the Wild Garlic and Olive Oil later on but also add texture to the bread. Place in the oven and cook for 12 minutes.

When 12 minutes has passed quickly take the bread from the oven (making sure to close the oven door quickly to retain the heat). Sprinkle the top of the bread the chopped Almonds and evenly distribute the Finely Chopped Wild Garlic. Finish with a good pinch of Coarse Maldon Salt and a grinding of Black Pepper, then finish the bread with a little more Olive Oil. Return to the oven for another 10 minutes until golden brown.

Once cooked your kitchen will be filled with the intoxicating fume of fresh bread and warm Wild Garlic. Take the Wild Garlic Foccacia bread and place the now golden and herby slab on a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Serve in nice big wedges decorated with the reserved white Wild Garlic flowers, with some sun dried tomatoes and Olives. Perfect for an appetiser or just as a greedy lunch!

Oh, and if you haven't got access to Wild Garlilc, why not try another Wild Herb such as Jack by the Hedge!

Wild Food Home

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