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Jul 14, 2018

Fougasse with Olives and Rosemary (Provençal Bread)

This fougasse with olives and rosemary is a chewy, crispy, and flavorful rustic bread with an open crumb. If your favorite part of artisan bread is the crust, you will love fougasse.

Fougasse is one of the breads of Provence, in the south of France. It's a crusty yeasted flatbread that is often shaped like a leaf, with cuts to create openings in the bread. The dough is similar to baguette dough, and the interior is airy like a baguette but just flatter and with more crust! It's also much easier and less stressful to shape.

This is my third fougasse recipe, the first being one with herbes de Provence back in 2014 (I need to make it again), and the second being adorable mini fougasse. I've since made an amazing fougasse with herbes de Provence and Gruyère cheese

To make this Fougasse with Olives and Rosemary, you will need to make the dough a day in advance and refrigerate it for 16 to 48 hours to develop flavor. Making the dough in advance actually makes it easier to work with, especially because the dough is so highly hydrated.

Fougasse with Olives and Rosemary

What distinguishes this fougasse are the olives throughout the dough, along with a small amount of sifted whole wheat flour. You sift the whole wheat flour to remove the bran because the bran will cut into the gluten to prevent the dough from becoming airy.

This fougasse recipe produces a bread that is crispy and delicious the day that it is made and will also last for several days for toasting.

Fougasse Provençal Bread

This recipe made two loaves. I baked them both the same day, but you can bake one loaf one day, and the second loaf the next day if you prefer. Just divide the dough in half prior to refrigerating.

Today is Bastille Day, as it's known in English speaking countries, or Fête nationale or le 14 Juillet, as it's called in France. It's the anniversary of the storming of the Bastille, where political prisoners were kept, and evidently a turning point in the French revolution. "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times...."

Camilla of Culinary Adventures with Camilla is hosting a roundup of French recipes to celebrate Bastille Day. To celebrate, I made this Fougasse, a bread that is traditional in Provence. It's usually salty and herby, and can often include olives. If you're not a fan of olives, feel free to omit them. You'll still love this bread. After the recipe, be sure to check out the rest of the recipes celebrating Bastille Day.

Recipe Notes:

This bread is sprinkled with course sea salt prior to baking. I used Le Saunier Fleur de Sel de Camargue, a sea salt I originally purchased on memorable vacation in Provence hosted by my dad. Of course you don't need this specific salt, but I love the memories of this vacation. 

Whatever salt you use, after the first day, the salt will kind of melt into the crust and look a bit blistery. The same thing happens with soft pretzels and pretzel buns. It's not a big deal, and won't affect the flavor.. just the appearance of the bread. 

Fougasse, bread, olives
Yield: 2 large loaves

Fougasse with Olives and Rosemary (Provençal Bread)


  • 1/4 cup (1  1/3 ounces) whole wheat flour
  • 3 cups (15 ounces) bread flour
  • 1 cup pitted kalamata olives, coarsely chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, plus more for seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon instant yeast
  • 1 1/2 cups (12 ounces) water
  • Cornmeal or semolina flour 
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons coarse sea salt


  1. Sift the whole wheat flour through a fine mesh sieve to remove the bran over the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the bread flour, olives, salt, and yeast to the mixer bowl. Add the water, and mix on low with the dough hook for about 5 to 7 minutes. 
  2. Transfer the dough to to an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rest at room temperature for 30 minutes. 
  3. Fold the dough 8 times over itself and then re-cover the dough with plastic wrap. Let the dough rest for 30 minutes. Repeat every 30 minutes. 3 more times. 
  4. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 16 to 48 hours. 
  5. Transfer the dough to a floured work surface and divide the dough in half. Form each half into a ball, and the press each into a 5 inch triangle. 
  6. Cover each triangle with oiled plastic wrap and let rise for 30 to 60 minutes, until the dough is no longer cold. 
  7. Place a baking stone on a lower rack of your oven and heat the oven to 450 degrees F. Place two pieces of parchment paper on your work surface, and dust them liberally with cornmeal or semolina flour. 
  8. Move one piece of the dough to a floured work surface, and stretch it out to a 10 inch by 8 inch triangle. Transfer it to one of the parchment papers. 
  9. Using a pizza wheel, make a cut down the middle of the triangle. Make 3 cuts through the dough on each side, leaving a border. Stretch the dough to make sure all of the cuts are opened. Cover the dough with oiled plastic wrap and let rest at room temperature for 30 to 45 minutes. Repeat with the other half of the dough. 
  10. Brush the first loaf with olive oil and sprinkle with rosemary and sea salt. Slide the loaf, parchment and all, onto the baking stone, and bake 18 to 25 minutes, until a deep golden brown. Repeat with the second loaf. 
  11. Cool on a wire rack. Bake the second loaf and cool on a wire rack. 

Black olive Fougasse Provençal Bread #fougasse #bread #artisanbread

Would you like to comment?

  1. Of course fougasse is a kind of bread!! How could I not have known that from my bread-baking master pal. This looks amazing, Karen. One of these days...I'll actually attempt to bake some of your breads.

    1. Thanks so much Camilla! You'd love the rhythm of baking bread.

  2. Seriously, you need to open a bread baking school! All of your breads always look fantastic :)

  3. Stunning! I love baking breads and I had never heard of this one and it is definitely on my bucket list now!

    1. Thanks Amy. This one is one of my favorites!

  4. Because it's so hot this July, lately we've been happily making fougasse on the barbecue. But silly me, I didn't think to add olives and rosemary!

    The garden rosemary hasn't died yet and we just happen to have some lovely (expired but still delicious) Nyons olives on hand. Clearly, these ingredients must go into our next fougasse. Thank you for the reminder!

    1. Thanks Elizabeth. I actually froze one of the loaves and then reheated it and the olives were just fine. Another way to extend the life of your olives! I also have a rosemary plant that grows like a weed!

  5. This is such a pretty bread - I vaguely remember seeing it before, but this is definitely inspiring me to give it a try!

    1. Oh you should! It's fabulous! Thanks Caroline.

  6. Is it possible to get the ingredients list in grams? Many Thanks!

    1. Yes! If you google "ounces to grams" you will be able to convert all of the measurements.

  7. This looks like such a lovely, fancy bread - and it sounds delicious!


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