Tomato, rosemary and red onion focaccia with whipped roasted garlic and tomato butter

Serves: 6
Course: Bread
Cooking Time: 35 mins
Prep Time: 10 mins
  • 500g strong (bread) flour
  • 10g instant yeast
  • 1tbs salt
  • 350ml warm water
  • 50ml olive oil
  • 250g halved cherry tomatoes
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • Fresh rosemary
  • Sea salt
  • 1 bulb of garlic
  • 70g unsalted butter
  • 3tbs sun dried tomatoes in oil, chopped
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Preheat your oven to 220 degrees.
  2. For the focaccia: in a large mixing bowl, combine the bread flour, instant yeast and salt. Mix well. Gradually add the warm water and olive oil to the flour mixture, stirring until a dough forms. Turn the dough out on to a floured surface and knead for about eight minutes until it becomes smooth and elastic. Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover with a clean kitchen towel, and let it rise in a warm place for about one hour, or until it doubles in size. Once the dough has risen, punch it down to release the air and transfer it to a greased baking dish. Use your hands to press and stretch the dough into a rectangle or oval shape. Press the cherry tomato halves, red onion slices, and fresh rosemary sprigs into the dough, evenly distributing them. Cover the dough with a kitchen towel and let it rise for another half hour.
  3. For the garlic for the butter: slice off the top of the garlic head to expose the cloves. Drizzle with a little olive oil, wrap in foil and roast in the preheated oven for about 30 minutes or until the garlic cloves are soft and golden. Allow it to cool. While the dough is rising, squeeze the roasted garlic cloves from their skins into a small bowl. Add the softened butter, chopped sun-dried tomatoes, salt and pepper. Use a fork or a hand mixer to whip the ingredients together until well combined and creamy.
  4. Once the dough has risen again, use your fingers to create dimples all over the surface of the dough. Spread half the whipped roasted garlic and tomato butter evenly over the top of the dough. Coat the bread with a little olive oil and sprinkle coarse sea salt over the focaccia. Bake in the preheated oven for about 20-25 minutes, or until the focaccia is golden brown and cooked through. Remove from the oven and let it cool slightly before slicing and serving with the remaining butter.
Gráinne O'Keefe

Gráinne O'Keefe

Gráinne O’Keefe is a chef, restaurateur and contributor to The Irish Times. She is chef-patron of the Dublin restaurant Mae