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Jun 30, 2014

Leaf-Shaped Fougasse

Leaf-Shaped Fougasse from Karen's Kitchen Stories

This fougasse is made from a pretty amazing focaccia dough from the book Baking with Julia, by Dorie Greenspan. The book was written in 1996, and is a chronicle of the recipes from guests of Julia Child's PBS series, Baking with Julia. It's an inspiration.

This fougasse is best eaten right away, but can be revived in the oven or toaster oven. It's great dipped, like breadsticks, in flavored olive oil and balsamic, or, as we had it, dipped in hot pizza sauce. Seriously delicious. We were very happy.

(Don't tell anyone that I had leftover bread and pizza sauce for breakfast.)

Trust me, this stuff is good. It's also really easy. Don't be intimidated by baking bread!

Leaf-Shaped Fougasse


2 1/2 C 90 degree water
2 T active dry yeast
1/4 C olive oil
27.6 ounces unbleached all purpose flour
4 t salt
Olive oil, coarse sea salt (ideally fleur de sel de Camargue), and herbes de Provence for topping (I also added some crushed red pepper to the topping of one of my loaves).
Spray bottle filled with water

  1. Mix 1/2 C of the water with the yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer and set aside to let the yeast disolve. Pour the rest of the water and the olive oil into the bowl and mix. Add the salt and half the flour and stir. Add the rest of the flour and mix with the dough hook on low speed for three minutes. Next, mix on medium high for 10 minutes. They dough should be very elastic. This is a very wet dough.
  2. Remove the dough from the bowl, shape into a ball, and place it into a oiled bowl or dough rising bucket, cover with plastic wrap, and let it rise until doubled, 60 to 90 minutes.
  3. Fold the dough over itself to deflate it and recover it and let it double again, about 45 minutes.
  4. Cut the dough into three equal pieces, shape the pieces into balls, and place them into one gallon zip lock bags that have been sprayed with spray oil. Refrigerate the dough for 24 to 36 hours.
  5. Remove the dough pieces from the refrigerator about 1 1/2 hour before you plan on shaping it. Remove them from the bags and place them on a floured surface and cover with oiled plastic wrap and let rest for about an hour.
  6. With a rack on the lower third of the oven, and preheat it to 450 degrees F. Line three baking sheets with parchment and sprinkle the paper with cornmeal or semolina flour. 
  7. Gently shape the dough into a teardrop shape and place it on the baking sheet. You don't have to be too exacting. 
  8. With a sharp knife, cut a leaf pattern into the dough, all of the way through. Using your hands, gently open up the cuts so that they don't close while baking. 
  9. Brush the loaf with olive oil and sprinkle it with sea salt and the herbs. 
  10. Let the dough rest for about 15 minutes. 
  11. Bake the fougasse, one sheet at a time, for 15 to 18 minutes, spraying the oven with water (don't spray the lights or the oven window) three times during the first 8 minutes. 
  12. Remove the fougasse from the oven, brush with a bit more oil if you like (I skipped this step), and cool on a rack.
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Would you like to comment?

  1. I love making fougasse. Mostly because I like saying fougasse. Loudly.

    1. Add in creme fraiche and we're good to go. Kind of like a South Park episode. =)

  2. Very nice, Karen. I'm going to try to make this for rewind week.

    1. Thanks Cathy!! It was pretty easy actually.

  3. Your bread looks so good. Great pattern.

  4. pizza sauce dippers---good idea! your leaf came out lovely.

  5. It would be great if you indicated at the start of the recipe how many loaves/ how much the recipe makes. Thanks!

    1. Sorry about that. This was 10 years ago before I knew better. Three loaves.


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