Mini Focaccia Pizzas

Mini Focaccia Pizzas

Baking bread is a challenge that a lot of people find daunting. And I get that. The process is technical, precise, and time consuming. But after binging Salt Fat Acid Heat on Netflix, my friend Liz and I decided we needed to become focaccia masters. Our exact vision, though, was of focaccia pizza. The end result was neither a straightforward focaccia nor a pizza, but something in between. Our day started at the farmers’ market, where we picked out an assortment of toppings for our focaccia. To be honest, we might have gone a little overboard there, resulting in two entirely different focaccia pizzas. But they were delicious so I’m not mad about it.

Now when it comes to focaccia, many recipes require 12-14 hours of fermentation time. But while that’s something I’d happily commit to, I really wanted to do a post on this little culinary adventure and was afraid that a recipe of that length would scare readers off. So for that reason (and because Liz is a good sport), we opted for something a bit quicker.

Toppings

Before I get into the recipe, I want to talk a little bit about toppings. While I thought our toppings were pretty dang great, if you want to go another route with yours, feel free! Toppings are generally pretty flexible, so get as creative as you’d like. We kept our first pizza simple (and vegan!) with cremini mushrooms, black olives, roasted garlic, flaky sea salt and rosemary. Our second had mozzarella pearls, rosemary, cherry tomatoes, roasted garlic, and flaky sea salt. Both were delicious, but the second was my favorite. (I love a good cheese glob.)

A word of advice, though? Go hard on the toppings. As your focaccia bakes, it’ll expand. Your toppings will also shrink a bit due to water loss. We didn’t really take that into account, as we were super preoccupied with making sure our focaccia was photogenic. I don’t really have any regrets about that because I need good pictures to lure you over to recipe posts, but if that weren’t a concern I’d probably have doubled the toppings.

Mini Focaccia Pizzas
Mini Focaccia Pizzas
Mini Focaccia Pizzas
Mini Focaccia Pizzas
Mini Focaccia Pizzas
Mini Focaccia Pizzas

Ingredients:

For the Focaccia Base:

  • 1 1/3 cup warm water
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • A single package active-dry yeast
  • 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more for greasing
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt

Toppings:

Note: You may have extra cherry tomatoes and cremini mushrooms, but unless you’re shopping at a farmers’ market, that’s probably the amount you’ll have to buy. That’s ok. Use what you want and throw the rest into a pasta dish or a salad!

  • 1 head of garlic
  • A few sprigs of rosemary
  • 1 package of cherry tomatoes
  • A hand full of black olives (pitted)
  • 1 package of cremini mushrooms
  • Flaky sea salt
  • Lots of extra virgin olive oil

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Then combine your warm water and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer. Stir in the yeast and let this mixture sit for about 5 minutes, or until it’s nice and foamy.
  2. Once it’s foamy, add the flour, olive oil and salt. Attach the dough hook and mix on low speed until incorporated. Then increase the speed to medium and let it go for about 5 minutes, or until the dough starts to pull away from the bowl. If you find that it’s too sticky, sprinkle a bit more flour in with the mixer running.
  3. Remove the dough from the bowl and shape it into a ball. Then grease a bowl with olive oil and place the dough in it. Cover the bowl and leave it in a warm spot for about an hour, or until it’s doubled in size.
  4. While you wait for the dough to rise, roast your garlic (if you’re using it). Peel the outer layers off the bulb, leaving the individual skins intact. Then chop the top of the garlic off. Put the remaining bulb on a parchment paper lined baking dish or cupcake tin. Pour about a tsp of olive oil over the exposed head, making sure it’s nice and coated. Then wrap it in tinfoil (if you’ve got it), and roast for 25-40 minutes, or until the cloves are soft to the touch and lightly browned. Wait until it’s cool enough to handle, then squeeze the individual cloves out.
  5. Now return to your dough. Separate it into two halves and then roll each half out on a floured surface. You’ll want each one to be roughly 11.25 x 9″, and about 1/2″ thick. Grease two 11.25 x 9″ baking trays with olive oil and put a slab of dough in each. Cover them with plastic wrap and let them rise for about 20 more minutes.
  6. While you’re waiting, prep your toppings! This is the perfect time to slice mushrooms, pluck leaves off rosemary sprigs and halve/pit olives.
  7. Once your 20 minutes is up, uncover the trays and use your fingers to make deep indentations in your dough. Don’t be afraid to be rough here – it can take it. Once you’re satisfied with your mountainous dough slab, add a glug of olive oil evenly over the surface of the dough. A couple tablespoons should be good. Scatter your toppings over the dough. Be generous here! Then put the trays in the oven for 20-25 minutes, or until the focaccia begins to turn light gold.
  8. After you pull your trays out of the oven, add a bit more olive oil, then cut and serve!

I know from experience that these focaccia pizzas will last about a week in the fridge. I also know that they make for a great weekday breakfast.

If you give this recipe a shot, be sure to let me know how it went in the comments or on Instagram! And if you decide to use different toppings, we’ll absolutely need to discuss because I’ll need inspo for next time.

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