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Sweet Focaccia with Boisterous Summer Fruit

Sweet Focaccia with Summer Fruit

Sweet Focaccia with Summer Fruit.

With Independence Day behind us it’s safe to say that Summer has barreled in full force. In fact, here in Hollywood, it’s sat its big, luxurious bottom down with a juicy plop. Everywhere I turn I see the fruit of summer’s labor. And I do mean fruit. Most notably stone fruit. Nectarines, peaches, plums and all those crazy cross-breeds with names that make you smile – pluots, plumcots and apriums, oh my!

These are the boisterous fruit of summer, and the Hollywood Farmers Market is overflowing with more varieties than I’ve ever seen before. It used to be “a peach was a peach and a plum was a plum” and that was that. Not that I’m complaining. The best of these cross-breeds have intense, intriguing flavors. Some are so raucous I can hear them screaming my name all the way up here in the hills where I live. If you ask me these sweet dreams don’t need to throw stones to start a riot. So after I’ve had my fill of them eaten out of hand, I usually try to calm their impetuous nature anyway I can. This year I attempted that taming with a Sweet Focaccio topped with sliced nectarines.

Wine Pairing

Cyprès de Climens

Cypres de Climens
Is it OK to be second? Not if you’re running for president. But most of us are perfectly happy to win Second Place in a Beauty Contest (even if it only pays a measly $10 in Monopoly money). And we all appreciate second chances. Now I’d like you to consider second wines. Specifically, the Cyprès de Climens […]
Ken Eskenazi

Price $25 half bottle, 375ml

Pairs well with foie gras, salty or spicy cuisine, cured ham, high fat cheeses, Roquefort, pineapple, and creme brûlée.

This version of Sweet Focaccia is only slightly sweetened, with just 1/4 cup of sugar in the dough. Which makes this a not too sweet ending to a light summer meal. Though I’ll admit I found this bread just as delicious with my tea and the morning paper.

I have to say, I’m taking a few liberties by calling this yeasty cake a focaccia. It strays from Italian tradition in several key ways. First, it uses butter instead of olive oil and I added a touch of cream to give the bread a soft texture. It’s also baked at a lower temperature to keep the fruit brightly colored. I’m not sure if Italians would even approve, but it’s going on my (not so) short list of summer favorites.

This recipe is also highly adaptable. My version is made with nectarines. But you could use peaches or plums (or any of those crazy, clamoring cross-breeds) in your version of Sweet Focaccia. In fact go ahead and mix in a few roughly chopped nuts and summer berries if you like. The raspberries at the Hollywood Farmers Market are screaming for attention this summer. It just depends on which of the boisterous summer fruit is calling to you the loudest. GREG

Sweet Focaccia with Summer FruitSweet Focaccia with Summer Fruit

Sweet Focaccia with Summer Fruit

Sweet Focaccia with Nectarines

Print This Recipe Total time Yield 12Source Adapted from Martha StewartPublished
Sweet Focaccia with Nectarines

Ingredients

  • ½ cup water
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 egg (lightly beaten)
  • 3 tablespoon melted unsalted butter (divided, plus more for bowl and pan)
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar (divided)
  • ¼ ounce instant yeast
  • 2 ¼ cup all-purpose flour (plus more for kneading surface )
  • 6 necatrines (each cut into 1‑inch wedges )
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Directions

Combine water, cream, salt, egg, 2 tablespoons melted butter, and ¼ cup sugar in a mixer bowl. Sprinkle yeast over mixture, and let stand until foamy, about 10 minutes. With mixer on low speed, add flour, beating until sticky dough forms.

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead for about 1 minute until a ball forms. Place in a buttered bowl, cover lightly with plastic wrap, and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.

Butter bottom and sides of a 9‑by-13-inch rimmed baking sheet or shallow baking dish. Line with parchment overhanging two sides by at least 2 inches; butter the parchment. Stretch dough to cover the entire sheet, then begin pressing it out with your finger tips. As you are doing so, spread your fingers wide to make finger holes in the dough. The holes don’t need to go all the way through, you just want to create a craggy surface of uniform thickness.

Toss nectarine slices with lemon juice. Arrange them on top, slightly overlapping, in three lengthwise rows (leaving juices in bowl). Mix cinnamon and remaining ½ cup sugar in a small bowl. Drizzle remaining 1 tablespoons butter over nectariness, and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Let dough rise for 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake focaccia in upper third of oven, rotating halfway through, until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean, about 30 to 35 minutes (bottom and edges should be golden brown).

Let cool completely on wire racks. Use the overhanging parchment to lift the focaccia from the pan. Cut into 12 squares, and serve with a big dollop of ice cream.