Focaccia with pesto & mozzarella

Focaccia with pesto & mozzarella

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(12 ratings)

By

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Cooking time

Prep: 20 mins - 25 mins Cook: 30 mins Plus rising and proving

Skill level

Moderately easy

Servings

Serves 4 - 6

This homemade pesto bread is a delicious accompaniment to Italian food

Nutrition and extra info

Additional info

  • Vegetarian
Nutrition info

Nutrition

kcalories
638
protein
25g
carbs
96g
fat
20g
saturates
6g
fibre
4g
sugar
2g
salt
2.42g

Ingredients

  • 500g strong white bread flour, plus some for dusting
  • 1 ½ tsp salt
  • 7g sachet fast-action yeast
  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus some for drizzling
  • 125g ball mozzarella, drained
  • 5 tbsp pesto (shop-bought or see recipe, below)
  • sea salt, to serve (optional)

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Method

  1. Put the flour into a bowl and mix in the salt. Mix the yeast into 325ml tepid water. Add the water and oil to the flour, then mix well with a plastic scraper or your hands. When most of the liquid is incorporated, use your hands to bring all the ingredients together into a ball of dough.
  2. Tip the dough out onto a worktop lightly dusted with flour and work it by pulling and stretching for at least 10 mins. Try to get as much air into it as possible. Put the ball of worked dough into a well-oiled bowl, cover with a little more oil and a tea towel or cling film. Leave to rest for 1 hr or so in a non-draughty warm spot, until doubled in size.
  3. Now stretch the dough out onto a baking sheet until it’s about 20 x 30cm. Leave the dough to rise again to about half as high again, about 30-40 mins in a warm draught-free place, loosely covered with a tea towel.
  4. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. When the dough has risen, press your fingers into it gently to make some holes. Bake for about 15 mins, then remove from the oven. Tear over the mozzarella, then bake for another 5-10 mins until golden and cooked through. Drizzle over the pesto and scatter with sea salt, if you like. Serve straight away.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, September 2009

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Comments

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shoeahol1c's picture

I made this last week and it was lovely I thought it would have been really hard but it was really easy and really tasty even my 14 yr old step daughter loved it will be making it again!

ade_in_the_kitchen's picture
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I enjoy making bread and this recipe produced a delightful result. A very welcome addition to a relaxed family meal. I will certainly make it again.

paulandjason's picture
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I made this today. Exactly as above except that i pushed a half basil leaf into each impression I made in the dough before baking. I had a piece warm and a piece cold, I prefer cold myself. Baked well, tasted great. Thanks.

mrs-mac's picture

One of our favourite breads, made this bread yesterday and it was gorgeous. To stop the bread from developing a crispy crust drape a clean tea towel over it just ater you've drizzled the pesto/olive oil and scattered sea salt over it. The steam keeps the bread soft. This is what I always do.

jweg1210's picture
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Oh yes, this worked beautifully. Don't be worried about how wet the dough is - it will turn out just fine.

leztilley's picture

Love this recipe! Worked very well. I drizzled some oil over mine after it baked for 15 mins, then topped with Pesto, sun-dried tomatoes, mozzarella and an Italian herbs mix. I'm making this again today I enjoyed it so much!

amchoor's picture
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Nice and easy recipe which ballooned to an enormous size and was the moistest, fluffiest focaccia I've had. found it didn't brown much but apart from that it still looked and tasted great. am going to try it with olives and dried tomatoes next....

violet77's picture

Made this recipe for a family get together and served it with baked camembert drizzled with walnut oil, and made some guacamole and salsa. Was the hit of the night. I'm not a great cook and have minimal confidence but this was easy and turned out brilliant. Have shared the recipe with everyone. Good tapas platter.

rakichahal's picture
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Just the follow the instructions and it comes out perfect. Agree with the earlier comments, do put extra oil all over the top (not missing the corners and edges) to ensure that it all stays soft.

fluffyjacq's picture

Pesto is made of parmesan cheese: Parmesan/Parmigiano-Reggiano is an EU Protected Designation of Origin product and has to be made using calf rennet, so it’s definitely NOT suitable for vegetarians.

boiledover's picture
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Drizzle oil after baking. sprinkle with chopped herbs. Looks lovely and tastes absolutely delicious!

lilmssquirrel's picture
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Didn't brown as much as I'd hoped which may be because I brushed the top with olive oil on the advice of previous posts but it is absolutely scrummy and I will definitely be making this again!

Must make my own pesto next time...

squaccy's picture

ignore that! can't read :P

squaccy's picture

hey sorry, how much water do you have to add? its not in the ingredients :)

ritagior's picture
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Really nice, original and tasty. I used deep pan pizza pastry, used more mozzarella cheese and spread the homemade pesto all over the surface. A great recipe, sure to do again, and to add to my pizza recipe collection.

kahosk's picture
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Made this, and it worked beautifully. Definitely a success.

dylanski's picture
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Good, easy recipe with nice flavours. I think it needs quite a lot of olive oil at the first bake stage in order to keep it nice and soft as it can be quite crusty. This was my first real attempt at bread and I will definitely make it again

scott02467's picture
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Easy to make, accurate directions, pleasure to eat!

eleanormayo's picture
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I made this for a picnic and my friends all thought it was absolutely fantastic. I was a little disappointed with it though as it was not quite as I would imagine. One improvement I think would be to lightly brush the surface with a little olive oil before putting it in the oven as it would then be a little softer on the top and have less of a "bread crust".

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