Despite being smack dab between Fisherman’s Warf and Chinatown, San Francisco’s North Beach somehow is able to maintain its charm and dignity as an Italian cornerstone.
Make no mistake: I’m pretty sure there is a Pasta Pomodoro there, which is decidedly not Italian, but within it’s streets also lies Liguria Bakery, a tiny storefront with no sign outside and no hours posted, who’s owners have been making only one thing since 1911—pillowy slabs of focaccia.
I dream of it’s flour dusted floors, butcher paper and twine as I make this recipe—I feel more picturesque that way.
Rosemary-Fennel Focaccia Recipe
Fluffy homemade focaccia recipes flavored with fragrant rosemary and fennel seeds. Dairy free!
- Yield: 1 Loaf 1x
- 2 cups lukewarm water (85°F to 95°F)
- 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 3 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon crushed fennel seeds
- 4 cups bread flour
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
- Combine water and yeast in a large bowl and whisk until dissolved. Add 3 tablespoons olive oil, 2 teaspoons salt, black pepper, 1/2 teaspoon fennel, and 1 cup flour. Using a wooden spoon, stir vigorously until well incorporated (mixture will be lumpy). Add remaining flour, about 1/2 cup at a time, until a soft, sticky dough is formed (you may not use all the flour). Oil a large bowl and transfer dough to oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and place in refrigerator overnight.
- The next day, remove dough from refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature in a warm, draft-free place. Meanwhile, line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Slide dough onto baking sheet preserving as many air pockets as possible. Gently pull and stretch dough to the edges of baking sheet. Press fingertips all over dough to form indentations.
- Brush top of dough with remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil and sprinkle with remaining fennel, salt and rosemary. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm, draft-free area until slightly puffed, about 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, heat oven to 450°F and arrange rack in middle. Bake focaccia until deep, golden brown about 20 to 30 minutes. Transfer to a rack and cool.