gluten-free fruit focaccia

Amidst the chaos of moving many states away and still job and apartment searching, I am taking time to be grateful for the many blessings that we have and that are yet to come. So while we are crashing with my wonderful in-laws, I am trying to expand my gluten-free baking repertoire! (since the majority of them cannot eat gluten)IMG_3317IMG_3306

I had seen this beautiful post on King Arthur’s Instagram a few weeks back, not knowing from the picture that it was gluten-free! The original recipe, below, is from a wonderful Spanish chef and blogger, author of Cannelle et Vanille. It is deceiving because you think it will be a sweet bread, but it’s not—it is a perfectly balanced, savory bread with bright flavors of thyme and juicy, sweet fruit on top.IMG_3307

If you are using an all-purpose gluten-free flour other than King Arthur, make sure to check the ingredients for xanthan gum. If your flour has xanthan already, do not add more as this recipe calls for.IMG_3363

Gluten-free fruit focaccia
yields 1 9-inch loaf

1 tablespoon active dry or instant yeast
3/4 to 1 cup warm water
1 teaspoon sugar (I used honey instead)
2 3/4 cups King Arthur Gluten-Free Multi-Purpose Flour
1 1/2 teaspoons xanthan gum
1 teaspoon salt (I added an extra 1/2 tsp)
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves (I added an extra 1/2 tsp)
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for topping
1 tablespoon honey
1 large egg at room temperature, lightly beaten
1 cup small black grapes or blackberries (or cherries!)
flaked sea salt, for topping

Directions

  1. Line the bottom of a 9″ cake pan with parchment paper. Brush the inside edges with olive oil and set aside.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the yeast, warm water, and sugar. Let the yeast activate for 10 to 15 minutes, until foamy.
  3. Combine the flour, xanthan gum, salt, black pepper, and thyme in a bowl. Add the yeast mixture, olive oil, honey, and egg. Mix at medium speed for 1 minute. The dough should have the consistency of thick cake batter. Add a little warm water if needed. (I had to add almost a 1/4 cup more to get the right consistency.)
  4. Transfer the dough to the prepared pan. Grease your fingers and use them to spread the dough evenly. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and let the dough rise for 45 to 50 minutes, until doubled in volume. The time will vary depending on room temperature.
  5. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Remove the plastic wrap from the pan, and lightly brush the top with olive oil. Gently press the grapes (or berries) into the dough. Sprinkle the top with a pinch of sea salt.
  6. Bake the focaccia for 35 to 40 minutes, until golden brown. Remove it from the oven and cool in the pan on a rack for 20 minutes before turning it out of the pan and returning it to the rack to cool completely.
  7. Store any leftovers at room temperature, well wrapped, for several days. Freeze for longer storage.

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