Rosemary and Olive No Knead Focaccia Bread with paper thin slices of Meyer lemon is an easy yeast bread you’ll come back to again and again. With only a quick hand mixing and 40 minutes to rise, you can have it on the table, (or in your mouth!) in just over an hour.
This no knead focaccia (“foh-KA-cha”) bread recipe is near and dear to my heart,
It’s one of the first yeast breads I learned to make, and is still a favorite because it’s simple and foolproof. Sometimes I make it plain, sometimes just with the rosemary and salt…I’ve topped it with everything from pine nuts to cherry tomatoes, and I’m still experimenting after so many years. Make it once and it’ll become a family institution…my kids used to beg for rosemary bread like it was candy.
Who doesn’t crave homemade bread?
The smell alone drives me nuts. It’s so frustrating that most of us don’t get the chance to experience that thrill much anymore, but guess what ~ with this quick and easy focaccia recipe you can reconnect with your inner baker any time you want.
What you’ll need for this no knead focaccia bread:
- a packet of yeast
- I like to use instant yeast, it’s super quick to rise, but regular is fine too
- I usually use all purpose flour, but you can also use bread flour
- olive oil
- fresh rosemary
- Meyer lemon
- you can use a thin skinned regular lemon if you like.
- black and pitted!
Easy no knead method:
- After you’ve mixed the shaggy dough together, you’ll let it rise for about 40 minutes.
- Punch it down and then pat it out onto an oiled baking sheet, it will be sticky.
- Use your fingers dipped in olive oil to make little dimples all over the surface of the dough. These will hold little pools of olive oil that will bake up into the characteristic crunchy and flavorful crust.
- Topped the dough with the flavorful goodies.
- Pop it into a hot (425F) oven for about 20 minutes. Yum. The combination of flavors and that wonderful crusty texture is pretty great. I especially love the burst of citrus when I bite into one of those lemon bits.
Yes, you can eat the whole lemon slices!
Be sure to slice your lemon paper thin, and remove any seeds. I like to use my mandoline slicer for the job.
Meyer lemons are awesome, so grab them when you see them, you won’t be sorry. They’re smaller, sweeter, and thinner skinned than regular lemons, from China originally, as a cross between a lemon and either a mandarin orange or a common orange, nobody knows for sure. What is for sure is that these lemons are incredibly delicious.
Where’s the best place to let my dough rise?
The ideal temperature for bread dough to rise, not surprisingly, is at body temperature, about 98.6F ~ yeast is a living organism, after all. Dough will rise at a variety of temperatures, even in the refrigerator, but it will be a much slower process. Here are some good spots for rising dough~
- in an appliance like a proofing box, or an Instant Pot that can maintain a specific temperature. The yogurt setting (on ‘low’) works perfectly in the Instant Pot.
- in front of a sunny window where the sunbeams can shine right on the covered dough.
- in an oven that’s been heated to 150F, then turned off.
- in an oven with the oven light on. Some people like to add a 9×13 pan half full of boiling water to the bottom shelf.
- in a microwave where you’ve boiled water for several minutes just before putting your dough inside.
- in a warm spot in the basement near a furnace.
- on top of a running dryer ~ I used to put my youngest daughter there when she was a baby to get her to sleep 😉
- under your down comforter ~ it works!
- overnight in the refrigerator. Bring it back to room temperature before proceeding.
Rosemary and Olive No Knead Focaccia Bread
- 2 tsp (one packet or 1/4 ounce) dry yeast, make sure it's fresh!
- 2 cups warm water, (105-110F)
- 2 tsp table salt
- 4 cups all-purpose or bread flour, I usually use all-purpose
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for oiling the bowl and baking pan
- 4 Tbsp fresh rosemary leaves,
- 1 Meyer lemon, sliced paper thin, seeds removed
- 1/2 cup Kalamata olives, pitted and oil cured, or other flavorful black olives (not the kind in the can!)
- kosher or sea salt for sprinkling over the top
- Mix the yeast and the warm water in a large bowl. Stir in the salt and 2 cups of the flour and mix into a soft sticky dough.
- Add the remaining 2 cups of flour and mix well, the dough will still be somewhat sticky and shaggy.
- Oil a clean bowl and transfer the dough to the oiled bowl. Cover with plastic and let sit in a warm spot for 40 minutes. I put mine in my Instant Pot that I had preheated on the Yogurt setting. Your kitchen counter will typically not be warm enough for rising dough, see notes above for suggestions)
- Set the oven to 425F
- Turn the risen dough out onto an oiled baking sheet. Press it out gently with floured fingers into a rectangle, about 10×15, approximately.
- Using your fingers, dip them into the olive oil and then make little dimples all over the dough. The oil will pool in the little indentations. Don’t skimp here, that oil will flavor the dough and give it great texture as it bakes, too.
- Top with the sliced lemons, rosemary leaves, and olives, pushing them into the dough just gently. Dab a little more olive oil on top if you think you don’t have enough. Shower lightly with sea salt.
- Make sure your oven is at the correct temperature, and bake for about 20-22 minutes, until the bread is just golden. Rotate the baking sheet halfway through if the bread is baking unevenly.
- Let cool slightly before slicing and devouring.
- This bread is easy to make your own, there are lots of different toppings to try, so experiment with what you like.
- You can mix dried herbs right into the dough for an herb bread.
- Try this with half whole wheat flour for a nutrition boost.
- If you don’t have Meyer lemons you can use regular lemons if you can get small, thin skinned ones. Thicker skinned lemons will be too bitter.
Questions and Reviews
Have you tried making this with rosemary end-user olive oil? I think it would make the flavor pop.
I think your auto correct meant ‘infused’? And yes, that would be amazing! I think I’ll make some…
I’ve been watching bread making vids and also baking all sorts of breads but not foccacia! I think I’ll give this a go tonight!
One question: if I use half whole wheat, should I up the liquid by maybe a quarter cup? Most of the recipes with ww say to do so and it’s also been my experience. The quarter cup is what I’ve found works for 2 cups of ww, all things climate being equal. Sometimes it’s q cpl of tbsp less if the climate is very humid.
Thanks for the recipe!
If you’ve been making bread lately this focaccia is going to seem like a breeze to you, I’m sure! Go ahead and up the liquid a little, but the one cup of ww flour won’t make too much of a difference, I don’t think. Maybe see how the dough feels, it should be nice and sticky.
This looks so fantastic! I’m 5 weeks into a complete kitchen redo, and I haven’t been able to bake (or cook) anything in that time. I’m itching to get going again. (Still another 2 weeks to go probably, because of a delay on the cabinets.) This is going to the top of my things-to-bake list.
I envy you, Denise, even though kitchen re-dos can be inconvenient, just think about the result! Whenever I’m traveling and away from my kitchen for any length of time I can’t wait to get back to it, hope your last 2 weeks flies by 🙂
Looks amazing! What other topping combinations would you recommend?
I’m planning one with mushrooms and thyme, Marsha. Also artichokes, or bell peppers, marinated or fresh. Jalapenos would be great, too. I’ve done cherry tomatoes, pine nuts…I’m wondering if sausage or another meat would work, that’s still in the experimental stages 😉
I love focaccia Sue, sweet or savory! Love the combo of ingredients here!
Sue, I’m going to try this but without the olives, just can’t eat them. Any suggestions for a replacement? I do have the Meyer lemonds
I’ve made wonderful focaccia with just the lemons and rosemary, here. It’s basically the same recipe.
What a beautiful bread and of course, no-knead is always good 🙂 A great side for a big bowl of pasta!
Oh gosh, be still my heart ~ it’s actually chilly here in CA today, and I could use a bowl of that pasta!
I’m quite certain that once I started eating this, it would be the whole delicious meal!
I could eat my weight in this lovely bread. Olive and rosemary are perfect together and all that lemon! Yum! Sharing and pinning 🙂
One of my favourite Italian classics! Love the lemon slices here..must be very refreshing!
They’re like little bursts of sunshine 🙂