Focaccia Bread with Caramelized Onions and Mushroom (Whole Wheat)

Focaccia Bread is an easy basic Italian bread recipe studded with caramelized onions and sliced mushrooms. Made with whole wheat flour instead of APF, this is a must have appetizer for your next party!

Focaccia Bread with Caramelized Onions and Mushroom (Whole Wheat)

Focaccia Bread is an easy basic Italian bread recipe studded with caramelized onions and sliced mushrooms. The Focaccia Bread recipe I share today is made with whole wheat flour instead of APF or Maida. If you are a beginner with bread baking, focaccia bread is something I would urge you to try first. It is fairly easy with good success rate even as a first timer.

A popular antipasto, appetizer or snack, Focaccia Bread is a part of the Italian cuisine. It is also known as a flatbread and can be turned into sandwiches too. However, we at home prefer loading the focaccia bread with lots of different varieties of toppings like peppers, olives, jalapenos apart from the caramelized onions and mushrooms.

A bowl of soup and some warm focaccia bread on the side is a perfect no fuss filling meal for the entire family, especially in winters and monsoon.

Piece of Italian Focaccia Bread
A slice of warm Focaccia Bread

Since schools are opening shortly in India, this is a recipe that you could try for their lunch box as a special treat or also as a after school snack. This is also an ideal bread recipe for Potluck parties or when visiting friends too. A warm and hearty loaf of bread does bring you praises.

Some of the Focaccia Recipes on the blog are Focaccia with Bell Peppers and Olives AND Whole Wheat Focaccia with Peppers, Tomatoes Olives and Fresh Rosemary.

While most Focaccia Bread Recipes call for Maida or All Purpose Flour, I prefer baking with whole wheat. With tips and tricks shared in the blog post, achieving that soft texture of the focaccia bread will be a piece of cake, I assure!

Moist Whole Wheat Focaccia Bread
Soft Texture of the Whole Wheat Focaccia Bread

Tips to Achieve Soft Whole Wheat Focaccia Bread

  • Sift the Whole Wheat Flour 2 or 3 times for best results
  • Knead the bread dough for 10 to 15 minutes and incorporate the fat (oil or butter) slowly while kneading.
  • Use lukewarm water to knead the bread. Incorporate the water slowly while kneading and do not dump the entire quantity as mentioned in the recipe. Flour quality varies and so will the water required for kneading.
  • Allow your dough to prove for longer (1st proof) for softer whole wheat bread.

The Focaccia Bread can be served with a hot cup of tea or coffee. As a starter (bread basket) with sliced cheese / Cheese cubes, a glass of wine. You could also opt for some Kalamata olives on the side while serving. A warm bowl of soup like Minestrone or Tomato Soup with Focaccia Bread is a perfect light dinner option too.

Caramelized Onions and Mushroom Topped on whole wheat focaccia bread
Sea Salt, Rosemary and Chilli Flakes sprinkled generously on the Focaccia bread

You may also like to look at some of my favourite ITALIAN RECIPES on the blog. They are vegan and do not contain any cheese or dairy products. Check out the Basil Pesto, Spaghetti Aglio Olio AND Vegan Tomato Sauce Pasta with Mixed Vegetables.

The Whole Wheat Flour used for the recipe is from SunReap Brand, a Kolkata based company. This recipe has been developed for the brand and is now available on their website too. The Brand sells locally milled flours and is engaged in export of food grains. The Brand’s USP is the freshness of the flour.

Let us now look at the step wise recipe, plenty of tips below and make a big batch of this warm whole wheat Focaccia Bread over the weekend.

Step by Step Recipe for Focaccia Bread with Caramelized Onions and Mushroom (Whole Wheat)

(1) Sift the 3 cups of whole wheat flour and keep aside.

Sifting the whole wheat flour

(2) In a small bowl add ½ cup lukewarm water, sugar and instant yeast. Mix well and close the bowl with the lid.

Proofing the yeast

(3) After about 5 to 7 minutes, the yeast would have activated (froths)

Frothy bowl of yeast

(4) Take a large bowl, add the flour and salt. Mix well.

Wheat Flour and Salt combined

(5) Now add the frothy yeast mixture into the flour and salt. Mix well with hands.

Adding the frothy yeast mixture to the whole wheat flour

(6) Add some more water to knead into a sticky dough.

Mixing the ingredients to form a sticky dough

(7) Now, place the dough on the counter top / kitchen platform and knead for 10 minutes.

Stretching the dough to activate gluten for focaccia bread

(8) Incorporate or mix oil in between (the entire 3.5 tbsp) until the gluten has activated and the dough is soft to touch.

Dough set aside for proofing

(9) Grease a bowl (for proofing) with some olive oil and place the kneaded dough inside it. Cover and let it rise for atleast 1 hour or until the dough is double in size.

(10) In the meanwhile, let us grease a tin for baking the focaccia and keep aside. The tin size used here is 9″x 9″ with height of 2.5 inches. 

(11) Now let us prepare the topping by heating a pan with some olive oil. Add the sliced onions with a big pinch of salt. Allow this to caramelize slightly.

Sliced Onions and Button Mushrooms
Caramelized Onions Ready

(12) In the same pan, saute some sliced mushrooms with salt and fresh rosemary. Do not allow the mushrooms to leave moisture and ensure the heat is high. It takes few seconds for mushrooms to cook.

Button Mushrooms sauteed with rosemary and sea salt

(13) Allow the topping to cool completely before adding on focaccia.

(14) Once the dough has risen, punch the dough lightly. Knead it lightly for 1 or 2 seconds.

Knocking the air by punching the dough

(15) Place the dough on to the greased baking tray and push it to the edges of the tray. Allow this dough to further rise for 45 minutes.

Spreading the focaccia dough to a greased tin

(16) Preheat the oven at 200 degrees. (After 45 mins of proving)

(17) Once the dough has risen (2nd proofing), make small holes with your index finger and drizzle some olive oil and sea salt.

Make Holes with index finger to pour oil and sea salt for a good salty focaccia bread

(18) Add the toppings on the focaccia and drizzle some more olive oil as required.

Adding rosemary and sea salt to the foccacia bread before baking

(19) Top the focaccia with some fresh rosemary and sea salt. Bake the focaccia bread at 200 degrees for 30 minutes. Serve piping hot or warm.

Focaccia Bread with onion and mushroom

Focaccia Bread with Caramelized Onions and Mushroom (Whole Wheat)

Focaccia Bread is a Popular Italian Bread served as appetizer. Made with whole wheat flour and topped generously with caramelized onions, mushrooms, sprinkle of sea salt and aromatic rosemary, this is your ultimate weekend food with a glass of wine or a bowl of hot soup. Ideal for potluck parties and gifting friends.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Appetizer, Side Dish
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: Bread Recipe for beginners, Caramelized Onions, Focaccia Bread, Italian Focaccia Bread, Mushroom, Whole Wheat Focaccia
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
2 hours for proofing the dough: 2 hours
Total Time: 3 hours
Servings: 5 people

Ingredients

  • 3 cups Whole Wheat Flour 1 cup is 250 ml measurement
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cup Lukewarm water 1 cup for kneading and 1/2 cup for proofing the yeast
  • 2 1/2 tsp Instant Yeast
  • 1/2 tbsp Raw Sugar You can use Brown Sugar or Refined Sugar too
  • 3 1/2 tbsp Olive Oil For kneading the bread
  • 1 tsp Olive Oil For greasing the baking tray and bowls
  • 2 tsp Olive Oil For Drizzling over the focaccia bread
  • Sea Salt to sprinkle as required
  • Chilli flakes to sprinkle
  • Fresh sprigs of rosemary
  • FOR THE CARAMELIZED ONION AND MUSHROOM TOPPING
  • 2 nos Onions Sliced Large onions used here (you can opt for 4 small instead)
  • 6 nos. Button Mushrooms Sliced
  • 1 tsp Olive Oil
  • A sprig of Rosemary
  • salt to taste

Instructions

  • Sift the whole wheat flour and keep aside. Sift it twice for soft bread.
  • In a small bowl add ½ cup lukewarm water, sugar and instant yeast. Mix well and close the bowl with the lid.
  • After about 5 to 7 minutes, the yeast would have activated (froths)
  • Take a large bowl, add the flour and salt. Mix well.
  • Now add the frothy yeast mixture into the flour and salt. Mix well with hands.
  • Add some more water to knead into a sticky dough.
  • Now, place the sticky dough on your kitchen platform and knead for 10 minutes.
  • Incorporate or mix oil in between kneading the dough (the entire 3.5 tblsp) until the gluten has activated and the dough is soft to touch.
  • Grease a bowl (for proofing) with some olive oil and place this kneaded dough inside it.
  •  Cover and let it rise for atleast 1 hour.
  • In the meanwhile, let us grease a tin for baking the focaccia and keep aside.
  • Now let us prepare the topping by heating a pan with some olive oil.
  • Add the sliced onions with a big pinch of salt. Allow this to caramelize slightly and then keep aside.
  • In the same pan, saute some sliced mushrooms with salt and fresh rosemary. Do not allow the mushrooms to leave moisture and ensure the heat is high. It takes few seconds for mushrooms to cook.
  • Allow the topping to cool completely before adding on focaccia.
  • Once the dough has risen, punch the dough lightly. Knead it lightly for 1 or 2 seconds.
  • Place the dough into the greased baking tray and push it to the edges of the tray. Allow this dough to further rise for 45 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven at 200 degrees for 10 minutes (After the 2nd proofing)
  • Once the dough has risen (2nd proofing), make small holes with your index finger and drizzle some olive oil and sea salt.
  • Add the toppings on the focaccia and drizzle some more olive oil as required.
  • Top the focaccia with some fresh rosemary and bake the bread at 200 degrees C for 30 minutes.
  • Serve piping hot or warm with a bowl of soup or a glass of wine

Notes

  • Proofing Time varies according to weather. It took me only 1 hour for the 1st proofing as summers are at its peak in Mumbai. 
  • The 2nd proofing also took about 45 minutes to an hour. 
  • The only indication is the dough should be double in size. It can take 1 hour or more than that depending on weather conditions as explained above. 
  • Use lukewarm water and not hot or cold water for kneading and proofing the yeast. 
  • I use instant yeast for all my bread preparations. 
  • Please experiment with toppings of your choice. I love the salty bits of the bread with the sweet onion combination. 
  • You can follow the same recipe using Maida or APF too. Use same measurements including kneading time. 
  • The tin size used here is 9″x 9″ with height of 2.5 inches. 
  • I have baked the bread using an OTG. 

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Views: 2661

Vidya Narayan

Hi Everyone, I am Vidya Narayan & Welcome to my blog MasalaChilli. Born in a Traditional Palakkad Iyer (South Indian) Family with strong value systems to an exceptionally strong and independent Single Mom, spent most of my childhood studying well (as most Iyer girls do).

This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Wow! This looks super delicious!

    1. Thanks so much

  2. Focaccia looks so soft with perfect texture.. mushroom and onions toppings make it a wholesome meal.. I can imagine the heavenly aroma in house while the bread baked.. love to have it with coffee!!

    1. Absolutely Swati, the aroma of fresh bread is something else! This goes perfect with coffee and soup too during winters. Glad you liked it.

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