Place of originItaly
Main ingredientsHigh-gluten flour, oil, water, salt, yeast

Focaccia (UK: /fəˈkæə/ fə-KATCH, US: /fˈkɑː(i)ə/ foh-KAH-ch(ee-)ə, Italian: [foˈkattʃa]; Ligurian: fugassa, Ligurian: [fyˈɡasːa]; Barese: fecazze, Neapolitan: [fəˈkattsə]) is a flat leavened oven-baked Italian bread.[1] In some contemporary places, such as Rome, it is a style of pizza, also called pizza bianca (lit.'white pizza').[2][3][4] Focaccia may be served as a side dish or as sandwich bread and it may be round, rectangular, or square shape.

Etymology and terminology

A square of focaccia
A square of focaccia

In Ancient Rome, panis focacius[1] was a flat bread baked on the hearth.[5] The word is derived from the Latin focus, 'hearth, place for baking'.[6] The basic recipe is thought by some to have originated with the Etruscans, but today it is widely associated with Ligurian cuisine,[citation needed] while outside Liguria the word usually refers to the Genoese variants.[7]

The first attestation of the word focaccia dates back to the 14th century.[8]

Focaccia is sometimes considered to be a variant of pizza in publications outside Italy,[a] although focaccia is left to rise after being flattened, while pizza is baked immediately.[b]

Regional variants

Focaccia genovese

Focaccia genovese (lit.'Genoese focaccia'), marked by its finger-sized holes on its surface (ombrisalli in Genoese dialect),[11] is brushed or sprinkled with olive oil, coarse salt, and sometimes water before the final rise.[11][12]

In Genoa, focaccia is eaten in the morning at breakfast or during the day. It is often dipped in milk or in cappuccino at breakfast and eaten warm and wet.[11]

Genoese fügassa

Ligurian variants

Focaccia has countless variations along the Ligurian coast, from the biscuit-hard focaccia secca (lit.'dry focaccia') to the corn-flour, oily, soft Voltri version,[13][14] some bearing little resemblance to the Genoese version.[citation needed]

An extreme example is focaccia con il formaggio (lit.'focaccia with cheese'), also called focaccia di Recco or focaccia tipo Recco, which is made in Recco, near Genoa. This version has stracchino cheese sandwiched between two layers of paper-thin dough.[15]

Other versions have a surface covered with sauce or ham.

Focaccia con il formaggio or focaccia di Recco, a typical variety of focaccia made in Recco

Other variants

In Northwest Italy, a popular variant is focaccia dolce (lit.'sweet focaccia'), which is sprinkled lightly with sugar, and may include raisins or honey.[16] In Northeast Italy, focaccia veneta (lit.'Venetian focaccia') is typical for Easter; it is based on eggs, sugar, and butter and it is similar to panettone and pandoro.[citation needed]

In South Tyrol and the Austrian village of Krimml, Osterfochaz (locally Fochiz) is a traditional Easter gift from godparents to their godchildren. It is made slightly thinner in the centre so that dyed eggs may be placed there.[17]

The traditional variant from Bari, focaccia barese, is prepared with durum wheat flour and topped with tomatoes.

Focaccia al rosmarino

Focaccia al rosmarino (lit.'rosemary focaccia') is topped with rosemary.[9][18][19][20] It may be served as an antipasto, table bread, or snack.[21][22][23][24] Whole or sliced fresh rosemary leaves may be used,[18] as can dried rosemary.[25] It may be garnished with sprigs of fresh rosemary, after baking,[19] and sprinkled with salt.[25] Potato rosemary focaccia is often called "potato pizza" in New York City.[26]

Although rosemary is the most common herb used to flavor focaccia,[27] sage is also used, and the variant is called focaccia alla salvia.[19]

Focaccia al rosmarino may have a moist texture, and the exact recipe varies.[28] It may be savory or sweet.[28] It typically is baked, although it is sometimes fried.[28] Garlic[18] or basil may be added.[29] It is sometimes served accompanied with slices of prosciutto crudo.[30][31] It may be used in the preparation of sandwiches.[20][32]

See also


  1. ^ "Focaccia with Rosemary; Yield: 1 (12-inch [30cm]) pizza"[9]
  2. ^ "What is the main difference between pizza and focaccia? The flattening of the dough, how long you take to roll out the dough, as well as the cooking time. Focaccia sits and rises before being baked. It is only put in the oven when the dough finishes rising. Pizza is placed in the oven immediately." – Gabriele Bonci[10]


  1. ^ a b "Panis focacius". Archived from the original on 2017-07-12. Retrieved 2008-12-30.
  2. ^ Riolo, A. (2012). The Mediterranean Diabetes Cookbook. American Diabetes Association. p. 260. ISBN 978-1-58040-483-9.
  3. ^ Fraioli, J.O. (2009). Pizza & Wine: Authentic Italian Recipes and Wine Pairings. Gibbs Smith, Publisher. p. 81. ISBN 978-1-4236-1250-6.
  4. ^ Simonis, D. (2010). Italy. Country Guide Series. Lonely Planet. p. 150. ISBN 978-1-74220-352-2.
  5. ^ "A Short History of Focaccia Bread". Big History. WordPress. Retrieved 2012-03-22.
  6. ^ Oxford Latin Dictionary (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1982, 1985 reprinting, p. 718.
  7. ^ Liguria!, That's. "Focaccia genovese, the taste of Liguria! | That's Liguria!". Retrieved 2020-12-24.
  8. ^ Toso, Fiorenzo (2015). Piccolo Dizionario Etimologico Ligure - L'origine, la storia e il significato di quattrocento parole a Genova e in Liguria. Zona. ISBN 9788864385778.
  9. ^ a b Whitson, C.; Gjesteland, T.; Widen, M.; Hansen, K. (2015). Passion for Pizza: A Journey Through Thick and Thin to Find the Pizza Elite. Agate Publishing, Incorporated. p. pt419. ISBN 978-1-57284-746-0.
  10. ^ Whitson, C.; Gjesteland, T.; Widen, M.; Hansen, K. (2015). Passion for Pizza: A Journey Through Thick and Thin to Find the Pizza Elite. Agate Publishing, Incorporated. p. pt73. ISBN 978-1-57284-746-0.
  11. ^ a b c Rossi, Sergio (2013). Focaccia genovese. Genova: Sagep. ISBN 978-88-6373-258-0. OCLC 956047034.
  12. ^ Massimo Alberini, Giorgio Mistretta, Guida all'Italia gastronomica, Touring Club Italiano, 1984, p. 192
  13. ^ "La focaccia di Priano: una delle più buone in assoluto - Mentelocale". 2015-01-20. Archived from the original on 2015-01-20. Retrieved 2020-12-24.
  14. ^ "Focaccia di Voltri". Oggi - Cucina (in Italian). Retrieved 2020-12-24.
  15. ^ "Focaccia di Recco". Academia Barilla. Retrieved 9 November 2018.
  16. ^ "Focaccia Bread". Archived from the original on 3 May 2012. Retrieved 22 March 2012.
  17. ^ "Ostern" [Easter] (in German). Familien feiern Feste. Archived from the original on 2018-09-25. Retrieved 2018-09-24.
  18. ^ a b c Bertoli, F.B.; Mauriello, F.M.R. (2011). From a Rectory Kitchen. XULON Press. p. 15. ISBN 978-1-61904-695-5.
  19. ^ a b c Orsini, G.; Orsini, J.E. (2007). Italian Baking Secrets. St. Martin's Press. p. 113. ISBN 978-0-312-35820-4.
  20. ^ a b Deseran, S.; Weaver, J. (2013). Picnics: Delicious Recipes for Outdoor Entertaining. Chronicle Books LLC. p. 21. ISBN 978-1-4521-2848-1.
  21. ^ "In via Saluzzo un locale consacrato al mollusco". La Stampa (in Italian). November 2, 2015. Retrieved March 4, 2016.
  22. ^ Rossi, L.; Verdi, D.; Gialli, G. (2014). Ricette del giorno: Antipasti. Ricette del giorno (in Italian). Bibliotheka Edizioni. p. pt41. ISBN 978-88-98801-59-6.
  23. ^ Klein, D.M. (2001). The Mediterranean Vegan Kitchen: Meat-free, Egg-free, Dairy-free Dishes from the Healthiest Place Under the Sun. HP Books. p. 191. ISBN 978-1-55788-359-9.
  24. ^ Marcangelo, J.; Birch, C. (1984). Italian Vegetarian Cooking. Inner Traditions/Bear. p. 94. ISBN 978-0-89281-343-8.
  25. ^ a b Desert Island Dishes. Infinite Ideas Series. Infinite Ideas. 2012. p. 32. ISBN 978-1-908984-16-6.
  26. ^ Reinhart, P. (2010). American Pie: My Search for the Perfect Pizza. Potter/TenSpeed/Harmony. p. 235. ISBN 978-1-60774-090-2.
  27. ^ Sauvage, J. (2015). Gluten-Free Wish List: Sweet and Savory Treats You've Missed the Most. Chronicle Books LLC. p. 59. ISBN 978-1-4521-4389-7.
  28. ^ a b c The Illustrated Step-by-Step Cook. Look & cook. DK Publishing. 2010. pp. 392–393. ISBN 978-0-7566-7507-3.
  29. ^ Barnett, A. (1996). Examining Food Technology. Examining Food Technology Series. Pearson Education. p. 44. ISBN 978-0-435-42062-8.
  30. ^ Mib, Ftse. "Focaccia al rosmarino e prosciutto". Ticino News (in Italian). Archived from the original on March 7, 2016. Retrieved March 4, 2016.
  31. ^ "Spuntini veloci: focaccia con fichi e caprino" (in Italian). Blogo. September 20, 2011. Archived from the original on 23 January 2019. Retrieved 4 March 2016.
  32. ^ Madison, D. (2014). The New Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone. Potter/TenSpeed/Harmony. p. pt391. ISBN 978-1-60774-554-9.

Further reading