Schiacciata

With flaky salt and a generous amount of olive oil, this flatbread is perfect for sandwiches, with soup, or simply by itself. Buon Appetito!

February 2, 2020

Author:

Ashley Fungone

Schiacciata

About three years ago I took my first trip to Italy. If you know me, then you know how big of a deal this was. I’m a proud Italian-American who has been in love with Italy from a very young age. In college I even minored in Italian language and had dreams of living there one day. After more than 20 years of dreaming of Italy, I finally got the chance to go and one thing lived up to my expectations more than anything else: the food. I really tried to experience Italy as authentically as possible, meaning I didn’t want to see or do anything too tourist-y, I wanted to speak English as little as I could manage, and I definitely didn’t want anything but authentic Italian food. 

Which brings me to possibly the best thing I’ve ever eaten: an Italian panini from All’antico Vinaio in Florence. These sandwiches aren’t just bread and meat and cheese, they’re seriously magic. They only use fresh made cheeses, house-cured meats, and a laundry list of toppings and spreads like truffle cream, pistachio spread, arugula, spicy n’duja cream, artichokes, you name it. The real star of this sandwich though might be the bread. It’s not a typical focaccia that you might see around Italy, this one’s called Schiacciata (which literally means “crushed” in Italian). It’s a Tuscan-style flatbread that’s really similar to focaccia, but made with a slightly different technique and without the recognizable focaccia dimples. It’s out-of-this-world delicious, and I can’t find it anywhere in the states. So, I made it myself. 

Let me caveat with the fact that this is never going to be as good at what you can get in Italy. Some Italians swear that the water in their town used for the bread make it delicious, some say it’s the oil, some say it’s the flour. In my opinion, I think the bread-makers in Italy have committed so many years to making this type of bread that my experience just can’t compare. But this recipe will get you really close until you can book that plane ticket to Florence.

 

Tips for making this recipe

This recipe is admittedly pretty easy, but there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Use quality ingredients. There are only a few things that go into baking this bread, most importantly being olive oil and flour. I recommend using Tipo 00 flour because that’s what’s used in Italy, and it’s a great quality Italian flour. You can buy it off Amazon, but some stores in the US sell is in their baking isle. Olive oil is equally important. If you live in NYC like me, you can get authentic imported Italian olive oil from Italian markets in Brooklyn or Manhattan. If you’re not in a major city where this is possible, you can opt for the best quality stuff at your local supermarket with a robust flavor profile.
  • Be patient. Bread takes time. You have to knead it to develop proper gluten, and it needs time to rest and rise. Don’t rush the process!

And that’s literally it. I recommend trying it plain once you’re done, but make sure to slice up some pieces to make un panino too. Buon appetito!

Print
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Schiacciata

  • Prep Time: 1 hr 20 min
  • Cook Time: 20 min
  • Total Time: 1 hr 40 min

Scale

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for finishing the dough
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast (1 packet)
  • 1/4 tsp honey
  • 2 1/2 cups (315 grams) Tipo 00 flour
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • Flaky salt for garnish

Instructions

 
  1. In a large bowl, combine the warm water, yeast, and honey. Stir a few times and let sit for 5 minutes.
  2. Add 1 cup flour and a 1/4 cup olive oil to the bowl with yeast and honey. Stir until the flour has moistened and let sit for another 5 minutes.

  3. Stir in the remaining 1 1/2 cups flour and the salt. When the dough comes together, transfer to a floured board and knead 10 to 15 times until smooth.

  4. Transfer the dough to a large oiled bowl and cover with a warm, damp towel. Let rise for 1 hour in a warm area of your kitchen until about doubled in size.

  5. After 1 hour, heat the oven to 450 degrees. Grease a 9×13 inch rimmed baking sheet with olive oil.

  6. Transfer the dough to the baking sheet and press it down into the pan. Drizzle the remaining olive oil over the top of the dough and use your hands to distribute evenly. Sprinkle with flaky salt and let the dough rise for 20 minutes until it puffs slightly.

  7. Bake until golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes. Cool baked flatbread on a wire rack, slice and enjoy!


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