Focaccia with Rainbow Chards, Olives & Feta
Updated: Aug 2
Call it Focaccia, Schiacciata, Scacciuni - this pie goes by many names, depending of where it is made, but essentially it's a thin, crunchy, stuffed focaccia.
Each family in Sicily (and across most parts of Italy) will have a version of it, with slight variations:
From the type of flour used - semola di grano duro (durum wheat) is what we prefer in Sicily, 00 flour, manitoba flour, wholewheat flour just to name a few;
To the filling - I posted a version of this with spinach and mozzarella before, my personal favourite. Other options include: tomato and mozzarella; tomato, mozzarella and ham; potato and sausage; and countless more;
Other combinations I love include:
Broccoli, or broccoli and olives
Parmigiana: fried aubergines, tomato, mozzarella and breadcrumbs
Potato and onion
Topinambur (Jerusalem artichokes) and onion
Cauliflower, chilli, onion and olives
...Or this version I'm sharing with you today: Rainbow chards, olives and feta.
I love chards and all green leafy vegetables - they are so earthy and delicious and really versatile. I feel they don't get enough representation in the food blogging world, but I'm on a mission to change that!
For this recipe, you'll notice that the rainbow chards are added raw to the focaccia - that's right, there's really no need to sauté or steam them before as they will get baked along with the other ingredients in the oven. This way, they'll preserve some of their moisture, and more of their nutrients and texture.
So let's dive right in!
Ingredients (for 1 large focaccia)
For the dough:
350 g spelt flour (or you cal use all 00 flour, or even all purpose)
150 g “00” flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
30ml extra virgin olive oil
12g brewer’s yeast
300 ml lukewarm water
For the filling:
400g rainbow chards
80g mixed green and black olives, pitted
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
125g crumbled feta cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
Sesame seeds and nigella seeds to sprinkle on top
Sieve the 2 flours and the salt. Dissolve the yeast and sugar in the water and let it sit for 5 minutes until it becomes frothy.
Add the yeasted water to the flour in batches, while kneading to incorporate.
Transfer the dough to a floured surface, add the oil and knead energetically for about 10 minutes until you obtain a smooth dough.
Cover with a kitchen towel and allow to proof for 2 hours, until doubled in volume.
Divide the dough in 2 parts, one slightly larger than the other, and roll each into a disc of 2-3mm thickness. Place the larger disc on a round baking tray.
Chop the chards finely and place in a large bowl. season with olive oil, salt and pepper and start massaging the leaves with your hands. You’ll notice they’ll shrink in volume pretty quickly and become darker.
To this, add the chopped olives and crumbled feta. Mix well to combine.
Preheat the oven to 200C. Fill the dough with the chard mix, and top with the second disc. Seal the edges with a fork or by pinching them together.
Brush the surface with more olive oil and sprinkle with sesame seeds and nigella seeds..
Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the top and bottom are crispy and golden brown.