Hello lovely friends!
I’m making my first ever 1KG batch of dough, it’s being made in exactly the same way that I always made dough now (Bertinet method).
The current ingredient ratios are:
1kg Strong White Flour
13g Dried Yeast (it would be 26g of fresh yeast)
9.18g Salt (“.18” just because it came out like that.
695g Semi-Skimmed milk
52g Olive oil
I am going to leave it to rise (covered) overnight, in the cold back room as it’s too big for my fridge.
This slow rise will create a lovely structure, but will also develop the taste of the dough. Tomorrow, I will cut the dough in half (by weight) and knead it/fold it into a foccacia shape, ready for the trays. Then I will let it slowly rise at room temperature until it’s ready to have the toppings put in/on.
Then I’ll bake it at gas mark 6.5, in a pre-heated oven, on top of a metal tray that’ll already be hot from the oven heating up (this bakes the bottom of the focaccia).
It’ll be turned halfway through, and after 30 minutes, I’ll take it out of the tray, and let it sit on the tray that’s still in the oven.
This time I might experiment with putting things like goats cheese in, after it’s baked.
Right! I’ve baked them. I’d like to let them rise for longer, or in a warmer environment, so they’re a bit higher going into the oven.
Once inside, I’d like to start the baking on the lower shelf, and finish with it being at the top for a crust. I find this might benefit the height of the dough, as the crust isn’t restricting the rise.
For the toppings, I used: pickled walnut, blue cheese, garlic and rosemary.
And for the other focaccia, I used: tomato, mozzarella, and thyme.
All herbs were coated in olive oil.
Both trays were coated with olive oil, and a dusting of flour.
The dough needed to be allowed to rise for longer, or in a warmer place. It didn’t rise enough, which left the bread feeling a bit heavy and stodgy, which isn’t allowed now (by my standards).
Both sets of ingredients were delicious, but the pickled walnuts with blue cheese, garlic and rosemary was delicious, especially for this time of year when the weather is getting colder.
I’d put more rosemary in the bread, and I’d like to try running some caramelised onions through the dough.
As far as making a larger batch of dough, there were no problems with just multiplying the numbers. I would like to try adding a little bit more moisture, to make kneading the dough easier. It’s focaccia, so it doesn’t need to hold it’s shape, like a standard loaf – for example.
So in summary, all things were positive and encouraging. I just need to let the dough rise more – either with more time, or a warmer environment.
OH! I nearly forgot: I want to try baking the focaccia on the lower level of the oven on gas mark 6.5. And when it’s risen sufficiently, I want to form the crust by moving it to the top of the oven.
I’m currently baking them for 40 minutes, but it’s 15 minutes (lower level) then turn it around (because the oven is hotter at the back), then another 15 minutes on the lower shelf. Then after that 30 minutes, take it out of the tray, and bake it on the rack up the top, to get the crust all around.
I haven’t done that exactly, yet. But I think it’s a good thing to try.
People say that you need to “feed” the focaccia with olive oil, when it’s first out of the oven. I’d like to try that as well.
And just before you put it in the oven to bake, make sure you push the fillings right to the bottom of the dough. Otherwise, they rise to the top.