Fougasse Farci with Grana Padano Dough, Beetroot, Grana Padano & ‘Smoked’ Tomato Sauce
This is my Provençal cheese pasty. The shape, in a very abstract way, is meant to resemble a head of wheat. You can speed the recipe up by leaving out the slashes and simply covering the filling to make the circle of dough into a half circle. Adding Grana Padano cheese gives it a delicious Italian twist! Smoked paprika is an excellent seasoning for tomatoes and gives you the 'trompe palais' impression that the sauce has been smoked. Feel free to use the pre-cooked beetroot that comes in vacuum packs. These are very generous portions, if you have any left over, I can heartily recommend it spread with the 'smoked' tomato sauce with more Grana Padano grilled on top or doused with extra virgin olive oil the next day. To make double the recipe and freeze one of the loaves, follow the instruction in step 10. Weigh the water, it is much more accurate than using a measuring jug.
Makes 1 loaf to serve 2 or 4 with a few salads Preparation time: 35 minutes, plus proving time; Cooking time: 15 minutes; Difficulty: Moderate
- Preheat your oven to 220ºc /Gas 7 / Position Upper Middle Shelf. Line a baking sheet with a non-stick mat or non-stick greaseproof paper.
- Get a large bowl. Add the flour, yeast, sugar, and salt. Make a little well in the centre. Pour in the water and the olive oil. Mix with one hand until everything is well combined into a dough.
- Transfer the dough to your worktop. Knead for 4-5 minutes until the dough is smooth.Put the dough back into the bowl. Cover it with a tea towel. Leave to rest while you make the stuffing. This rest relaxes the dough and means that you can flatten it without the dough bouncing back at you.
- Get a medium sized frying pan. Put the diced tomatoes, tomato puree and sundried tomatoes into it. Add ½ tsp smoked paprika. Fry over a medium heat for 3-4 minutes to dry the tomatoes out and intensify their flavour. Take the pan off the heat. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl.
- Leave to cool for 3 minutes. Stir in the Grana Padano, beetroot, olives and 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil. Season to taste with salt and sugar. Add more smoked paprika to your taste to make it more spicy or smoky. Put just over a third of this mixture into a small dish to serve on the side.
- Put the fougasse dough onto your lined baking sheet. Flatten this dough with your fingers into a 25cm circle.
- Spread the filling along one half of the circle, leaving 4cm free at the edge. Fold the dough over and seal the edges thoroughly by pressing them together with your fingers. Turn the fougasse over so that the join is underneath. Caress it into an oval shape.
- Brush the loaf with olive oil. Sprinkle each loaf lightly with the salt flakes and extra Grana Padano. Dust each loaf with 1-2 tsp flour.
- Use a Stanley knife to slash 5 grooves in the loaf. Put a boiled garlic clove in each groove.
- Bake the fougasse without proving it in your pre-heated oven for 12-14 minutes until it is golden brown. (If you double up the recipes you can cook the loaves a little less and freeze it a bit like the par-cooked baguettes you can buy).
- I like to slice the fougasse, squeeze the soft garlic out of its skin and spread a bit over each slice before I spoon over the sauce.
Medium sized frying pan