Thursday, June 20, 2013

BAKING- FOCACCIA topped with Carrots and Grapes

                 “If thou tastest a crust of bread, thou tastest all the stars and all the heavens.” – Robert Browning

bread IMG_2132.CR2-001

 Growing up home made bread was not a norm.    Moving to California where there is so much diversity in food and it's cuisine that my love for food just quadrupled(and more).  I was fascinated by a good garlic bread,  chiabbata,  french baguette and my favorite of all FOCACCIA.   With so many bakeries and grocery stores carrying freshly baked bread,  they made it's way to my home quite often than my waistline would have liked.   The olive oil crusted bread is famously topped with rosemary and onion, crazy good.

Baking my own bread has really allowed me to appreciate the process. Bread baking to me is very therapeutic, from the  kneading, to letting it double in volume, which I always though was fascinating.  If that's not enough to make you smile, you put it into the oven and see and smell the magic.  FRESH BAKED BREAD has nothing against anyone, it's the best.  

This focaccia is unbelievably tasty with it's crust from the olive oil oil and it needs no spread or accompaniments, it stands proud and accomplished alone.    My family of food lovers wait near the oven and sometimes can't even wait for it to cool down.  It's gone even before it appears on my dining table and we still crave for another piece.  SO  I'm expecting this to make more appearances in my kitchen.  


When you got to a different country or place, what food did you enjoy the most??

Adapted from Laura In the Kitchen , you could check her out  here.

FOCACCIA BREAD topped with Carrots and Grapes


All Purpose Flour              - 4 cups
Yeast                              - 1 packet
extra virgin olive oil         -  3 tbsp
sugar                               -  2 tbsp
Warm water(110degrees)  - 1 cup 
Carrot grated thick           - 1/2 cup
Grapes halved                  -1/2 cup
parmesan and pepper to top the focaccia


1. Add yeast in warm water and let it bubble up for 5 minutes.  Make sure the temperature of the water should be warm, not too cold or not too hot.
2.  In a stand mixer or food processor, add the all purpose flour, sugar, salt and give it a whip until all the ingredients are well combined.
3. Add the oil, and yeast mixture and let it whip.  Once the dough has come together, let it mix for another 10 minutes. 
4. Take it out on a floured surface and knead it a little by hand, coat it with olive oil, put in a bowl, wrap tight and let rise for 11/2 to2 hours or until it's doubled in volume.
5. Take it out and punch it down gently.  You are ready to roll.
6. Oil the pan you want to bake it in and roll the dough to fit the pan to 1/2 inch in thickness and let it rise for another 20 minutes covered loosely.
7. Preheat your oven to 400degrees.
8. After 20 minutes, brush the top of your dough with olive oil, sprinkle your grated carrot and arrange the grapes. 
9. Bake at 400 degress for 20 minutes in the lower part of your oven.
10. Halfway through the baking you can sprinkle some parmesan on top.
ENJOY with some balsamic and olive oil mix.


Dixya said...

I am itching to make freshly baked yeast bread and now you just tempted me even more

Rekha Vengalil said...

Wow Asha that looks really wonderful. Now I am tempted to make one too :)

Asha Shivakumar said...

Dixya,,,just helping with the carb wagon..that's all:)

Asha Shivakumar said...

Rekha, try it, it's so good.. said...

Looks very nice. Tempting to eat

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

A splendid focaccia! Really tempting.



Shruti@Part Time Chef said...

The grapes must taste lovely over this focaccia.
When I came to Europe ..I was smitten by fruits and veggies I had never tasted before..esp different berries and asparagus..

sushmita pandit said...

Yum yum yum......this is so inviting...

ada di sicilianicreativiincucina said...

Carrots and grapes together, for me is really new...I have to try this..

Asha Shivakumar said...

Thanks Sush for checking it out.

Asha Shivakumar said...

Ada, just wanted to try something different, it did work out well..

Shumaila @ The Novice Housewife said...

My most enjoyable experience with food was in Turkey, where I had gone on a vacation with my parents. We stayed in this small house converted into a hotel in the main market place of Istanbul. It was a very homely set up, where the owner would make breakfast for us each morning. He would serve croissants (the best I have had till date) which he got from a local bakery baked fresh every day. The croissants would be served with two half slices of tomatoes, 3-4 olives and eggs cooked by the owner whichever way you wanted. I am not a big fan of raw tomatoes except cherry tomatoes but these were so good that I never once complained. I can not even begin to describe how good the croissant was. Just perfect. Turkish food is great and I loved the rice that they serve with their meats but breakfast made by the owner of that place was and still the one of best food experiences I have had.
Coming to your bread. i love focaccia and this looks great. havent baked focaccia in ages. This makes me want to get the flour bag out of the cupboard and start kneading!

Asha Shivakumar said...

Thanks for transporting me straight to Turkey,the beautiful home and Croissants. I want to go stay there now. There's something about freshly baked goodies, just irresistible. I'm really fond of Turkish food too, especially sumac on everything..
Thanks for your lovely response dear.

Asha Shivakumar said...

btw happy baking Shumaila:)

Gheza e shiriin said...

Love Foccacia in all form. Interesting combi of grapes & carrots. will try.

Navaneetham Krishnan said...

Its awesome and its interesting to note how you have incorporated grapes and carrots on top.

I have to agree that home made bread are always superior to the store bought ones.

Asha Shivakumar said...

You logo is very nice Shiriin...thanks for stopping by.

Asha Shivakumar said...

thanks Nav..

Kiran @ said...

A very interesting focaccia :)

Asha Shivakumar said...

It was Kiran!!

Nikhil Shivakumar said...

Yummy bread!!!