Monday, March 7, 2011

Cranberry Focaccia Redux

Ina Garten did a most delicious looking apple and cranberry cake on her show today.  It inspired me to rummage around in the freezer for a perhaps forgotten bag of cranberries.  Alas, no luck.  But I did have a container of dried cranberries.

I've shared this recipe for cranberry focaccia previously but here it is again for those of you who weren't around the first time.  It's delicious with sliced turkey as a sandwich, as an accompaniment to soups (with a little butter slathered on) and with salads.

The recipe calls for a "well-seasoned 10-inch cast-iron skillet". I've had this skillet for more than twenty years. It belonged to a wonderful lady who babysat for us. When Lyda gave it to me, it was already well-seasoned. She had used it for fifty years! This pan is seventy years old and a favorite in our kitchen.  If you have a younger pan, I'm sure it will work just as well but without the memories.

After cooling on a wire rack, the focaccia could be wrapped and frozen. But not today. There's some deli-sliced turkey and romaine lettuce dressed with a little mayonnaise to be tucked inside.

Cranberry Cornmeal Focaccia
From an ancient Gourmet Magazine

3/4 cup cold water
3/4 cup dried cranberries
2 1/2 tsp dry yeast
1/4 tsp sugar
1/2 cup warm water (105 to 115F)
1 1/2 cups King Arthur all-purpose flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal
3 tbsp freshly grated Parmesan
3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 1/2 tsp coarse salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary leaves plus 6 sprigs for topping

In a small saucepan, bring cold water and cranberries just to a boil and remove pan from heat. Let cranberries stand 15 minutes. Drain cranberries into a sieve set over a bowl, reserving 1/4 cup of the liquid, and cool. Coarsely chop half the cranberries and set both the chopped and whole cranberries aside.

In the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment, stir on lowest speed the yeast, sugar and warm water for a few seconds and let stand 5 minutes until foamy. Add the chopped cranberries, reserved 1/4 cup of the cranberry liquid, flour, cornmeal, Parmesan, 2 tbsp of the olive oil, 2 tsp of the salt, the pepper and the chopped rosemary.

Continuing with the paddle attachment, knead dough 3 minutes, or until soft and slightly sticky. Scrape dough into a lightly oiled large bowl and form into a ball. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and allow to rise, in a warm place, 30 minutes or until almost doubled in bulk.

Transfer dough to an oiled, well-seasoned 10-inch cast-iron skillet or an oiled 10-inch pie plate and let rise, covered loosely with plastic wrap, in a warm place for 40 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375.

Brush dough with remaining tablespoon oil and press the reserved whole cranberries and rosemary sprigs randomly on top. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 tsp coarse salt.

Bake focaccia in middle of oven 25 to 30 minutes, or until golden brown. Transfer to a rack to cool.

Serve warm or at room temperature, cut into wedges.



  1. This looks really good! I'll have to try it sometime!

  2. Love your new header, Bonnie! It is fun to have a little change every once in a while. Makes me want to think of something new, too. I have this recipe printed out in my soon-to-try pile! Blessings ~ Tanna

  3. What a beautiful bread! I have to chuckle because I just looked in the freezer and thought "I'd better use up those cranberries:@)

  4. I would love having this for lunch today! Love the skillet too!

  5. Oh my word, that looks superb and just the right bite of crandberries with turkey. Will have to try this one soon.

    I have a skillet but not with those kind of memories. I was told never to use soap on these, just wipe them out. I have to use soap but I heat it up then add a touch of oil after its bath.

  6. This would be the star of a turkey sandwich or on its own with a nice salad.

  7. That's a gorgeous looking loaf!

  8. can i say gorgeous about a sandwich? wow, this loves divine to me. i want one now..

  9. Oh yum! I love the cranberry addition! I've never made focaccia but I totally need to now!

  10. Don't you just love ancient Gourmets? I love this recipe and will make it in my also ancient cast iron skillet.

  11. This looks good and so pretty! Great photos. I love the story about your old cast iron beauty.

  12. What a perfect focaccia! Love the combination of ingredients; great phtos to inspire us.Thank you.

  13. Ok, this recipe is great but I'm still up there on your new header just waiting on that spoon to land in my mouth! Yum!

  14. How pretty!! Dr. Oz was just saying on his show how good cranberries are for your health. West Side Story was in Stuart's Draft High School. I'm sure you know exacctly where that is and have passed by many times!

  15. Oh Bonnie, that looks AMAZING!!!!! I am going to make it!!!!

  16. I have to get my hands on a cast iron skillet asap. I have to buy it from the net since they don't carry such type of skillet here in Greece. Your focaccia is beautiful Bonnie!

  17. This really does sound delicious. There are recipes worth repeating and this is one of them. Your sandwich is close to perfect. Have a great day. Blessings...Mary

  18. I've made Ina's cranberry apple cake and it's delicious. Your foccaccia looks fantastic as well, Bonnie. I buy extra cranberries at Christmas and always have some in the freezer. Wish I could share with you.

  19. Bonnie, I've got to try this, I love cranberries.This recipe looks delish.I prepared an Indian pudding last week and I used a box of Jiffy corn muffin, it turned out purty tasty.

    Hey Bonnie thanks for visiting LazyonLoblolly and your sweet comments on Truimp and Tears and LazyonLoblolly are so appreciated.I'm thankful to meet great bloggers like you, so supportive, and kind.
    Please come back down Loblolly lane for a visit.

  20. This is one good looking bit of bread! I'm going out to buy an iron skillet TO-day!

    Thank you so much for sharing!

  21. OOHH, Bonnie, I would have enjoyed lunch at your house today!!! That looks totally delish!!

    I love the fact that your cast iron skillet has so much history to it. Mine isn't nearly that old...and not all that well seasoned either.

    Hope you enjoyed Dark Victory. That is my second favorite Bette Davis movie...though I love so many of her movies that there are several just a tiny smidge behind that one. Now, Voyager is my all-time fave of her.

    Blessings to you,

  22. This sounds delicious. I love focaccia and I bet its wonderful with the little bites of cranberry! I have to try this! I love my cast iron skillet. Reading your post reminds me that I need to take good care of mine so it will last at least 70 years. Amazing!

  23. Looks delicious! I must try your recipe. I saw Ina's show today also. You were quick to make it and do your blog so quickly.

  24. Oh my! that is a delicious looking focaccia! bookmarked for trying!

  25. What a wonderful recipe! It sounds like a wonderful treat to have as the bread for a turkey sandwich. I have a 36 year old cast iron skillet that I hope will do the trick :)

  26. I like that this recipe calls for baking in a cast iron skillet, I've only done that with corn bread. And how cool is it that you have a 70 year old cast iron pan? What a treasure!

  27. I love that your skillet holds such memories! I have several old ones that I bought at estate sales, but I don't know their history. This focaccia looks so good! The cranberries in it would go so well with the turkey on a sandwich. :)

  28. Gosh, that looks divine! I think you should figure out how to print out your recipes -- I know there's some sort of program that you can use which would make it so much easier for us to download and then print them out -- I know that's selfish, but your recipes are so tantalizing, and I'd love to print them out --

  29. How strange would it be to say that I've never used focaccia in the form of a sandwich...hmmm.
    I'll think of you the next time my MIL brings me some.

    I'll also speak to her about putting a twist on her recipe. Thanks for the inspiration Bonnie.

    Ciao for now,

  30. Your focaccia looks fabulous! I love the idea of using it for a sandwich - and I love that your pan is over 70 years old. :)

  31. That sandwich looks awesome.

    On a side note, I didn't see that episode, but Debby from a Feast For The Eyes, just made this cake and shared it on her blog. Looked yum!


I always enjoy hearing from you, my blogging friends.