Spooky focaccia is a fun and easy conversation starter for Halloween. With colorful roasted vegetables and soft bread, serve Spooky Focaccia instead of crackers! I had a blast making and serving memorable and delicious Spooky focaccia. Makes one 9 x 13 pan.
- 4 cups unbleached bread flour
- 2 TBSP food grade activated charcoal (like this from Amazon)
- 2 tsp kosher salt
- 2 tsp active dry yeast
- 2 1/4 cups lukewarm water
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Flaky sea salt (optional)
- Vegetables of your choosing
- In a glass bowl or container, sprinkle yeast over lukewarm water and allow to bloom for 10 minutes.
- In a large bowl, combine flour, activated charcoal and kosher salt. Add the water with yeast. Mix with a rubber spatula until liquid is absorbed and forms a sticky ball. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil, rub dough ball all over with oil. Make sure the entire surface is covered with oil. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside, in the refrigerator to rise for at least 12 hours or overnight. You can do this up to 3 days ahead of baking.
- Line a 9 x 13 baking pan with parchment paper. Grease parchment with olive oil. Turn parchment over, grease the other side with olive oil. Grease the sides of your pan as well. It’s ok to be generous. Then drizzle about 2 TBSP more extra virgin olive oil into the center of your baking pan.
- Deflate dough by carefully pulling it back from sides of bowl. Punch it down in the center. Lift it out and form a ball in your hands. Roll dough ball in the extra virgin olive oil coating it all over. Cover with a clean tea towel and allow to rise at room temperature for 4 hours.
- Meanwhile cut your vegetables and lay out your design on a cutting board or baking sheet. This step is fun and makes the final placement quick and easy. I used small cookie cutters for the shapes.
- Set oven rack to middle position and preheat to 425° F. Grab a small bowl, add 1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil and set aside. Rub your hands with extra virgin olive oil. Using the tips of your fingers press down on dough gently spreading it to fill the pan. Continue to “dimple” the dough all over with your fingers. Your dough will be lumpy and bumpy.
- With your hands still oily, dip your fingers in bowl of oil to rub each vegetable with olive oil before placing. Once your design is complete, drizzle any remaining olive oil from the bowl around the edges of the focaccia. Sprinkle with flaky sea salt.
- Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until edges are slightly crisp. It will be difficult to see brown edges since the bread is black, but you should be able to see some golden goodness. Cool before serving. Happy eating!
Spooky Focaccia makes a stunning centerpiece for your Halloween grazing table. Here we served it with:
Roasted Eggplant Baba Ganoush (recipe coming soon!)
Classic Caponata (recipe coming soon!)
Candied Oranges and Clementines (recipe coming soon!)
Locally Seasoned Chutneys and small batch cheeses sourced from local producers. We found these delicious gems at Central Wedge Cheese Shop in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. Search for small batch cheese producers and purveyors wherever you live. It’s some of the best eating and you feel good supporting local artisanal makers. Here are the cheeses we selected.
- St. Malachi cheese from The Farm at Doe Run
- 1795 Farmstead from the Creamery at Pleasant Lane Farm
- Mountain Valley Sharp Cheddar from Goot Essa (Good Food)