Apr 3, 2019

BLT Focaccia

This BLT Focaccia is stuffed with mozzarella cheese, bacon, and cherry tomatoes, and topped with more bacon and baby greens.

BLT Focaccia stuffed with mozzarella cheese, bacon, and cherry tomatoes #blt #focaccia

This BLT focaccia is a delicious take on the classic bacon, lettuce, and tomato sandwich.

The focaccia itself is super light and airy with a thin and crispy crust. You could top it with your favorite toppings.. or you could just brush the dough with olive oil and sprinkle it with a little sea salt and crushed red pepper.

I was thrilled with how this BLT focaccia turned out. The bread is filled with little surprises throughout... a pocket of cheese here, a bit of bacon there, a burst of tomato here and there.

You top the whole thing with even more bacon and just enough lettuce to call it a BLT.

BLT Focaccia with mozzarella cheese, bacon, and cherry tomatoes #blt #focaccia

How to make this BLT Focaccia:

First, you will need to make a "sponge," which is a mixture of flour, water, and a tiny bit of yeast that you let ferment overnight.

The dough itself has a tiny bit of rye flour, which is great for helping develop a hint of sourdough flavor. 

Second, you will need a 10 inch round cake pan, or a pan that is somewhat equivalent in area, like a 9 inch square cake pan (practicing my geometry). 

BLT Focaccia #blt #focaccia

The dough for this focaccia is super wet, which helps create an airy and light bread. Don't be tempted to add more flour. 

It's easiest to mix the dough with a stand mixer because it's so sticky, but you can mix it by hand. The dough also requires one set of "stretch and fold" during the first rise. 

Finally, don't be afraid to push the toppings into the dough, especially the bacon. I liked having just a bit of the bacon, tomatoes, and cheese peeking through the top of the focaccia. 

BLT focaccia

You might get some burned edges on the bacon, but that's okay. You will reserve most of the cooked bacon for topping the focaccia after it has fully baked. 

You can always par cook the portion of bacon that will be baked in the bread if you are concerned. I was perfectly happy with the bits of charred bacon in the bread. 

BLT Focaccia stuffed with mozzarella, bacon, and cherry tomatoes #blt #focaccia

Toppings for BLT Focaccia: 


I used an assortment of heirloom cherry tomatoes because I liked the variety of colors, but any cherry or grape tomatoes would work in this recipe.

For the lettuce, I used baby greens. I was tempted to toss the leaves in Miracle Whip salad dressing to pay homage to the BLT sandwiches my mom used to make, but I thought it wouldn't be that pretty. You could make a dipping sauce of your favorite creamy salad dressing for the slices.

You can reheat any leftover focaccia (without the lettuce) loosely wrapped in foil in the oven for about 10 minutes at 350 degrees F. and then top the slices with fresh lettuce.

It's National BLT Month!


Check out more takes on the theme, BLT: 
Our Foodie Extravaganza host this month is Sue of Palatable Pastime

BLT Focaccia Recipe


Yield: 10 servings (slices)
Author:

ingredients:

For the Sponge
  • 1/16 teaspoon instant yeast
  • 105 grams water
  • 86 grams bread flour
For the Focaccia Dough
  • 156 grams water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil for the dough
  • All of the sponge
  • 1 scant teaspoon instant yeast
  • 8 grams rye flour
  • 212 to 233 grams bread flour, plus more to sprinkle
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil for the pan
For the Topping
  • 8 ounces bacon, sliced into 1 inch pieces, fried, and drained on a paper towel lined plate
  • 3 ounces of low moisture full fat mozzarella cheese, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 10 cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • Handful of baby lettuce

instructions:

To Make the Sponge
  1. In a small glass bowl, mix the sponge ingredients and stir with a spoon until combined. 
  2. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it sit at room temperature for 12 to 24 hours. The sponge should be very bubbly.
To make the Dough
  1. Begin about 3 to 3 1/2 hours prior to baking time.
  2. Add the water, oil, the sponge, the yeast, rye flour, and 212 grams  of flour in the bowl of a stand mixer. Mix with a spoon or dough whisk, then mix with the dough hook of your mixer on low for about 2 minutes.
  3. Continue to run the mixer, and add the salt slowly.
  4. Increase the mixer speed to medium, and mix the dough until it is smooth and is beginning to pull away from the bowl. This should take about 6 to 8 minutes. Add additional flour in teaspoons if it is not pulling away from the bowl. Note: this dough is sticky, and will not pull away from the bowl like bread dough, so be very careful about adding too much flour. I added only 1 heaping tsp.
  5. Lightly oil a large bowl or dough rising bucket with olive oil, and add the dough. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise at room temperature until doubled, about 60 to 90 minutes.
  6. Stretch and fold the dough in the bowl or bucket. Pulling from underneath the dough, fold the four "sides" of the dough to the top center.
  7. Turn the dough over so the folded side is down and re-cover with plastic wrap, and let it sit at room temperature until doubled, about an hour.
  8. Place 3 tablespoons of the olive oil into the cake pan and tilt the pan to spread the oil evenly.
  9. Carefully scrape the dough into the prepared pan. 
  10. Gently urge the dough into a round shape with your fingers, and cover the pan with plastic wrap. Let the dough rest for 30 minutes.
BLT Focaccia
  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Once the dough has rested in the pan for 30 minutes, gently press your fingertips into the round a few times to push the edges out.
  3. Press about 1/4 of the bacon pieces into the dough with your fingertips, one piece at a time. 
  4. Press the pieces of cheese into the dough one at a time while pressing toward the rim of the pan. The cheese should be flush with the dough.
  5. Press the tomatoes into the dough using the same method.
  6. Sprinkle with sea salt.
  7. Let the dough rise, covered with plastic wrap, for about 30 minutes, until puffy.
  8. Bake until golden brown, about 30 to 40 minutes.
  9. Remove the pan and move the focaccia to a cooling rack by slipping a fork underneath and sliding it carefully out of the pan.
  10. Let cool a few minutes before slicing.
  11. Sprinkle the focaccia with the rest of the bacon and leaves of lettuce.
  12. Slice and serve while still warm. 
focaccia, BLT, bacon, mozzarella, tomatoes
Pizza, focaccia
Italian
Created using The Recipes Generator

More Focaccia Recipes from Karen's Kitchen Stories:


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8 comments:

  1. You always amaze me Karen. Love this recipe. My focaccia always turns out to thin and crispy.

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  2. I love charred bacon. It's in a horse race with charred bits of pepperoni. I think it really accentuates the flavor so I am always fine with it!

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    Replies
    1. It's right up there with burnt cheese and onions!

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  3. Delicious BLT focaccia, looking gorgeous.

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  4. I love bacon, specially during breakfast. Never thought that it could be a BLT Focaccia. This looks amazingly delicious. Gonna ask mom to make one of these.

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