Chef Recipe Series: Catherine Fulvio’s Red Wine & Grape Focaccia

Chef Recipe Series, Catherine Fulvio, Red Wine and Grape Focaccia, how to make bread, I Love Cooking Ireland

Chef Recipe Series: Catherine Fulvio’s Red Wine & Grape Focaccia

In this episode of our Chef Recipe Series with Catherine Fulvio “The Italian Job”, you will learn how to make a delicious Focaccia with Red Wine & Grapes.

If you have missed any of the episodes you can catch up on the rest of the series by just simply subscribing to our YouTube channel here.

Holding true to her Italian roots Catherine Fulvio from showcases a unique selection of Italian themed-recipe.

Our Chef Recipe Series features Catherine’s recipes which include a BelliniRoasted Cod with Red Pepper and Fennel Sauce ,Panna Cotta with Plum and Berry Compote , Spaghetti alla Carbonara and Chicken Hot Pot.

Catherine’s Ballyknocken House & Cookery School in Co. Wicklow, Autumn/Winter schedule has just been released with more classes being added over the next few weeks. Click here to see the schedule and to book courses.

Focaccia with Red Wine and Grapes

“There are many ways to eat focaccia! I guess it depends on what you are in the mood for but I think this is the perfect accompaniment for a glass of light Italian red for the girls at book club – just cut it into generous wedges and serve with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. ” – Catherine Fulvio 

Makes 1 round

For the dough:

  • 2 ½ tsp fast action dried yeast
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 100ml warm water
  • 600g “00” flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp chopped thyme
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 350ml warm water (you may need a little more)

For the topping:

  • 20 red grapes
  • 60ml red wine
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tbsp caster sugar
  • 4 to 5 small sprigs of thyme


  1. To prepare the dough, mix the yeast and sugar in the warm water in a small bowl and let it stand for 10 minutes. When the yeast is frothy, it is ready to use.
  2. Sift the flour into a mixing bowl and add the olive oil, salt, thyme and activated yeast.
  3. Add enough warm water to form a soft dough, adding more flour or water as required.
  4. Knead by hand for about 7–10 minutes until pliable and smooth, or place in a mixer fitted with a dough hook and knead for 5 minutes until the dough is soft and elastic. The dough should be slightly sticky.
  5. Brush a large bowl with oil for proving. Shape the dough into a ball and place it in the oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and leave in a warm place until the dough has trebled in size and is springy to the touch, which will take about 2 to 3 hours.
  6. In the meantime, heat the grapes and red wine in a small saucepan but not to boiling point. Remove from the heat and leave to cool.
  7. Line the base of a 25cm springform tin with baking parchment and brush the sides with olive oil. Wrap the outside of the tin with foil just in case the red wine later leaks through the sides.
  8. When the dough has risen, knock it back and knead it again on a lightly floured surface for about 2 minutes. Gently flatten the dough into the springform tin and brush with olive oil. Pour over the grapes and red wine. Cover with plastic wrap and leave to rise again in a warm place for about 30 to 40 minutes, until it has doubled in size.
  9. Preheat the oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/gas 6.
  10. Sprinkle over the sugar and sprigs of thyme and bake for about 35 to 40 minutes. Check that the loaf is cooked by tapping the bottom – if it sounds hollow then it’s done. Allow to cool in the tin for 20 minutes, then carefully loosen and transfer to the cooling rack.

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