Summer 2024

Tomato and Pesto Focaccia with Kalahari Desert Salt

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Serving: 8-12


For the dough:

500ml lukewarm water

7g dried yeast

1 tsp honey

3 tbsp olive oil, plus more for drizzling

550g bread flour

10g Kalahari Desert Salt, Selected by Maldon, grounded

For the garnish:

200g cherry tomatoes, halves

1/2 tsp Kalahari Desert Salt, Selected by Maldon

For the pesto:

Large bunch basil leaves

40g toasted pine nuts

40g parmesan cheese

100ml olive oil

Lemon zest and juice

1 garlic clove

Pinch of Kalahari Desert Salt, Selected by Maldon


Indulge in the irresistible allure of homemade tomato and pesto focaccia, a bread that not only delights the senses but also brings people together. This recipe elevates the classic focaccia with the exquisite touch of Kalahari Desert Salt, Selected by Maldon, known for its pure, delicate flavour. Ideal for tearing and sharing, this focaccia will make any gathering memorable, as its perfectly balanced taste and delightful texture invite guests to savour every bite.

The magic of this focaccia lies in the Kalahari Desert Salt, which is carefully integrated into the dough mixture. This exceptional salt enhances the natural flavours of the ingredients, creating a robust and well-rounded taste profile. The fresh pesto, made from vibrant basil leaves, toasted pine nuts, finely grated parmesan cheese, high-quality olive oil, zesty lemon, and aromatic garlic cloves, is further enriched by a pinch of Kalahari Desert Salt. This combination ensures that every piece of focaccia is bursting with flavor, making it the perfect centerpiece for any occasion.

How to a tomato and pesto focaccia

  1. In a large bowl, combine lukewarm water, olive oil, honey, and yeast. Whisk these together until well blended.
  2. Add the bread flour and mix using a large spoon until the mixture is thoroughly combined and hydrated. Then, incorporate the ground Kalahari Desert Salt, Selected by Maldon. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, cover, and let it rest for 30 minutes – 1 hr until doubled in size.
  3. Perform stretch and fold technique with wet hands every 30 minutes, repeating this process three times.
  4. After the final fold, leave the dough to proof for 1 hour at room temperature, or in the fridge overnight.
  5. Transfer the dough to an oiled baking tray, give it a final fold and allow it to proof for an additional 1 – 2 hours until doubled in size. If you proved it in the fridge overnight this may take an extra hour.
  6. Preheat the oven to 220°C (390°F).
  7. Using oiled fingers, create dimples in the dough, press in the cherry tomato halves, and drizzle the entire surface with olive oil. Sprinkle with the Kalahari Desert Salt, Selected by Maldon.
  8. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the bread is beautifully golden brown.
  9. While the bread bakes, prepare the pesto. In a food processor, blend together fresh basil leaves, toasted pine nuts, Parmesan cheese, olive oil, lemon zest and juice, garlic cloves, and a pinch of Kalahari Desert Salt until smooth and well combined.
  10. Drizzle the freshly baked bread with the fragrant homemade pesto.
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