Focaccia but make it spooky! Inspired by Ghoul At Heart’s Full Moon Focaccia, we created our own spooky scene using some tricks and treats from Natasha’s Kitchen. Her no-fail focaccia recipe and delicious garlic herb sauce for drizzling and dipping are sure to have you howling at the moon. It’s a 4-hour endeavor (a good dough needs her rest!), but hands-on time for the dough is half an hour and cook time is just 25 minutes. We’ve provided a list of the veggies we used but the possibilities for scary shapes and scenes are endless. Cookie cutters are helpful but not necessary.
- 1 ½ cups warm water, 105°-115° F
- 1 tsp honey
- 1 packet of rapid rise yeast
- 3 ¾ cups all purpose flour
- 1 ½ tsp salt
- 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil for dough
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil for pan
- Squid Ink or Black Food Coloring
We chose to make our own black food coloring, using a mixture of easy-to-find blue, green, and red food colorings. See the formula below.
Garlic Herb Sauce for drizzling and dipping:
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil for brushing on dough and veggies
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil for dipping
- 2 Tbsp water
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 ½ tsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped
- Coarse sea salt for sprinkling on top
Veggies for Spooky Scenery:
- 1 yellow carrot – cut in thin rounds for stars
- 1 red skin sweet potato – cut in thin rounds for pumpkins
- 1 white sweet potato – cut thin lengthwise for ghost and bone
- 1 bunch broccolini – stalks separated lengthwise for tree
- 1 small fairytale eggplant – cut into thin round for moon
- 1 small red cabbage -peel leaves for bats
- 1 large red radish – sliced thin for gravestones
- 1 bunch fresh thyme – soft sprigs for graveyard grass
- In a measuring cup, dissolve honey in warm water and stir in 1 packet of rapid rise yeast. Allow yeast to proof for 5-7 minutes or until the surface is foamy.
- While the yeast is proofing, use a large mixing bowl to whisk together the flour and salt. Make a well in the center of bowl
- Make the black food coloring:
- You don’t need very much of this mixture to tint the dough, but for the sake of easy math, we measured each part as a teaspoon
- In a separate small bowl, mix together the 1 tsp blue food coloring, 2 ½ tsp green, and 3 tsp red food coloring
- Pour yeast mixture into the large mixing bowl and add 3 tsp of black food coloring. You can add the remaining food coloring if desired – it will deepen the color of the dough.
- Stir with a wooden spoon until a sticky dough forms and no dry flour remains. The color may look streaked and uneven but it will come together as you knead the dough.
- Add 1 tbsp of olive oil and work the dough with your hands until all the oil is absorbed. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and rest at room temperature for 30 minutes until the dough has visibly puffed up.
- While the dough is resting, make the Garlic Herb Sauce. Whisk together the olive oil, water, garlic, and finely chopped rosemary. Add salt and set aside.
- Once dough is rested, you’ll begin the process of developing gluten strands by stretching and folding the dough. Gently pull up one corner of the dough, being careful not to tear, and then fold it over onto itself. Rotate the bowl and do this with the remaining 3 corners. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rest for 30 minutes at room temperature. Perform 3 more cycles of stretch-fold-rest, letting the dough rest covered for 30 minutes each time. Before the last stretch and fold, pour ¼ cup of olive oil into a 9×13 inch nonstick baking pan. Transfer the dough to the oiled pan immediately after the last stretch and fold.
- Once in the pan, gently stretch the dough to the edges. Cover and let rest for 45-60 minutes until the dough is visibly risen and puffy. Use this time to lay out your veggie scenery on a cutting board.
- Create dimples by using your fingertips to poke the dough, being careful not to break through the bottom of the dough.
- Re-whisk the Garlic Herb Sauce if it has separated and using a pastry brush, brush the sauce onto the dough. Reserve some for basting the vegetables that you will use to create your spooky scene. (Add more olive oil to the herb mixture if needed)
- Transfer your veggie scenery to the dough. Gently brush the Garlic Herb Sauce on each piece. Sprinkle coarse sea salt over top..
- Bake at 450° for 25 minutes or until the edges are crispy and golden brown (golden brown on purple, that is).
- After baking, immediately transfer to a wire rack so the bottom of the bread does not steam and become soggy.
- Allow to rest for 10 minutes before slicing and serving. Add more olive oil to the Garlic Herb Sauce to use for dipping if desired.