Save the fancy finger food for a more intimate gathering. When you’ve got a crowd coming over you need an appetizer that pleases everyone. This homemade foccacia doesn’t just meet that demand, it exceeds it! A quick and easy make, it’s also a budget bite for a crowd that really impresses both in presentation and taste.
You can make your own dough for this recipe, but if you’ve got a great pizzeria around the corner like I’m fortunate to have, save yourself the hassle and just buy a regular pie round from them. It’s just as cost friendly, but will save you work and allow you to whip this appetizer up almost instantly.
The beauty of this recipe lies in its simplicity. Don’t overdo it with toppings – just embellish your foccacia bread with a few basic, high-quality and great tasting ingredients. My essentials are great olive oil, homemade sauce, lots of garlic, a sprinkle of parmesan and a bunch of thinly sliced shallots or yellow onion.
Between the ladies in my family and those on my husband’s side, I’ve learned to keep a jar of homemade sauce in the fridge at all times. We like to use our homemade sauce like you might use butter – it’s always making an appearance at mealtime! I highly recommend using a homemade sauce for this recipe as it will give it lots of yummy flavor and texture.
If you can’t use a homemade sauce, it’s better than skimping on the olive oil. Make sure you use a quality extra virgin olive oil when making this recipe. It plays an important part in bringing the flavors of this foccacia together and also is responsible for the great texture, so don’t settle for a mediocre oil. I received a bottle of Cat Cora’s new extra virgin olive oil by Gaea over the holidays and was thrilled with the taste and quality. Not to undervalue my homemade sauce, but this was the shining star in the recipe!
Finally, like I said, keep toppings simple. Not only does this enhance the bread, it also won’t alienate picky eaters or stop them from grabbing a bite. Shallots are always my preference, but I couldn’t get my hands on any so I worked with thin slices of yellow onion instead.
1 round of dough
Extra virgin olive oil (quality!)
Sprinkle of Parmesan cheese (about 1 tablespoon worth was perfect for me)
4 – 5 tablespoons tomato sauce
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 small onion, sliced thin
Sprinkle of flour for workspace
Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Sprinkle your workplace with flour and knead out your dough so it’s pliable and soft. Then, shape it to fit your glass pan.
Place the dough in the glass pan and, using your finger tips, fit it to the pan while at the same time giving it little indentations for ingredients to settle into.
Drizzle your extra virgin olive oil on the dough and then sprinkle with the parmesan cheese.
Using a teaspoon, spoon your tomato sauce over the oil and cheese. Top with your minced garlic and sliced onion.
Bake for about 25 – 30 minutes or until the bread is golden on the sides. Remove from the oven and once cooled, transfer to a cutting board and slice.
About 30 minutes
12-20 depending on how big you cut the slices!