APULIAN FOCACCIA (FLAT BREAD)
the recipe of happiness













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      As for the rest of Italy, good food is one of the main reasons why tourists move to the "Bel Paese". This time we stop in the south, almost halfway between Gargano and Salento, precisely in Polignano a Mare. Known thanks to the crystal clear sea and the cavities that open in the rock, this little pearl is a terrace on the Adriatic Sea, but, without a doubt, the most interesting area of Polignano is its unique old town where you can find the real Italian atmosphere.

      A treasure hidden among the rocks, made of narrow streets, white houses with flowered balconies, walls, courtyards and finally the famous balcony overlooking one of its most beautiful beaches: Lama Monachile. Well known is the beauty of its landscapes, its crystal clear sea… but an important aspect, not to be underestimated, is the food. In fact, in this article I want to talk to you about the typical Apulian focaccia.

      Origins and preparation

      It was born in Altamura, not by chance the city of Bari jealously boasts its local product, but being one of the most loved and imitated, there are many variations not only in Puglia, but throughout the rest of Italy. Either for the different preparation process, or for the diversity of ingredients and seasonings..there is really something for everyone. Since it is a product of popular gastronomic tradition, the recipe has many variations, mostly on a geographical basis. The focaccia par excellence includes fresh tomatoes and olives from Baresano (although I prefer it without). In its most typical version, the base of the focaccia is obtained by mixing re-milled semolina, boiled potatoes, salt, yeast and water to obtain a rather elastic dough, soft but not sticky, which is left to rise, spread in a round baking tin greased with lots of extra virgin olive oil, already seasoned and cooked preferably in a wood-fired oven. As I was saying, the traditional one is flanked by the potato focaccia, which involves covering the entire upper surface with slices of potato about 5 mm thick; by the white focaccia, seasoned with coarse salt and rosemary, without considering the rest of the many variations, seasoned according to your tastes. As the daughter of an Apulian mother, it’s one of the things I love most, of course along with my beloved pizza. Memories and flavours linked to childhood but still remain current…

      Where to eat the best Focaccia in Polignano a Mare?

      Travelling around Puglia I had the chance to try various types, like the last time during my holiday in Polignano a Mare. I admit that I was there in 2015, but I remember very well my summer there… In fact, after a long walk in its historical centre, with a lot of photos taken here and there, I went in search of the best places to eat it. Here are some tips on what are the 5 best “focaccerie” in Polignano a Mare (shops which sell Focaccia), hoping to facilitate your search if you were to plan your visit to one of the most beautiful villages in southern Italy.

      • Delle Noci Marco’s focacceria
      • Fcazz E Birr (from the Apulian dialect translated as “Focaccia and Beer”)
      • The ignorant buns
      • Focacceria del Corso
      • Bread and butter
      Take home the best “souvenir” by taking a break to taste the delicious focaccia during your stay in Puglia. And, if you love good food and cooking, I want to propose you the recipe so, maybe, when you come back you could try to make it.

      Focaccia Pugliese Recipe

      Serves: 4 people
      Preparation: 40 minutes
      Cooking: 30 minutes

      INGREDIENTS FOR THE DOUGH

      • 1 potato 200 gr
      • 200 gr type “0” soft wheat flour
      • 300 gr re-milled durum wheat flour
      • 12 gr brewer’s yeast salt to taste
      • Extra virgin olive oil q.s.
      • 300 ml of water

      INGREDIENTS FOR THE FILLING

      • 10 cherry tomatoes
      • 1 pinch of oregano
      • Sat q.s.
      • Oil q.s.

      PREPARATION OF THE FOCACCIA

      • Boil the potato, peeling it and mashing it with a potato masher, or alternatively with a fork. The potato is essential to obtain a soft dough and to favour the preservation of the focaccia.
      • At this point prepare the focaccia dough: take a container in which to mix with your hands the different ingredients, that is, the previously mashed potato, semolina, flour, salt, yeast (previously dissolved in warm water), extra virgin olive oil and water, the latter to be added slowly until you get a soft and elastic dough.
      • Making a good dough is essential for the success of an excellent Apulian focaccia. Then let the mass rest for about 4 hours, wrapping the container with a blanket so that it can grow while remaining warm.
      • Now it’s time to place the dough in the baking dish. Before doing so, moisten it with oil up to the edges and place the dough in the pan, turning it so that both sides are wet, then roll it out with your fingertips. Stuff with cherry tomatoes cut in half and season with oil, salt and oregano, as needed.
      • Preheat the oven to 220° and once the pan is inserted, bake at 200° (in mode: not ventilation) for about 30 minutes.

      Enjoy!

      mariagrazia youknow

      Maria Grazia Funel

      Born in 1989
      Coming from Southern Italy, I cannot help but love the sea and, more generally, everything about travels and new places to discover. My perfect day? A beach, at sunset, in good company, with a nice bottle of wine!

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