Jun 4, 2014

Split focaccia sandwich with roasted baby beets, goat cheese and yogurt

It's been a baby beet festival in my home for the last couple of weeks. Beets with good bread, a touch of refreshing creaminess and me... one of its best moments.

Split focaccia sandwich with roasted baby beets, goat cheese and yogurt
by Gray Apron
time: 1/2 h preparation + 2 1/2 hrs inactive + (20 min +15 min) baking

bread adapted from Giallo Zafferano
800 ml (3 1/3 cups) flourI used 150 g (1 cup) regular flour + 250 g (2 1/3 cups) whole rye flour
25 g (1 oz) fresh yeast
5 g (1 teaspoon) sugar
350 ml (1.5 cups) tepid water (30C/86F), quantity divided
15 g (2 teaspoons) salt
60 ml (4 Tablespoons) olive oil
extra flour and olive oil for finishing
600 g (over 1 lb) whole baby beets, washed, patted dry and chopped

2 Tablespoons goat cheese
1/2 cup yogurt
olive oil
coarse salt, fresh ground pepper to taste

In a small bowl, crumble yeast and mix it with sugar and about 50 ml (4-5 Tablespoons) water to dissolve completely (I use my fingers for mixing). In a jar, mix the rest of the watersalt and 4 Tbs. olive oil.

In a bowl of a standing mixer, sift the flour(s). With your hands, mix in the yeast mix. Pour in the water mix. Using a needle attachment, knead the dough for 10 minutes, checking often if the flour from the bottom of the bowl is getting incorporated. Using a plastic scraper, clean the sides of the bowl and form a smooth mass of dough. Covered it with a cotton cloth and place it warm place (f.ex. oven turned off) for at least 2 hours, till it doubles or triples in size. 
Drizzle two baking sheets with olive oil

After dough doubles in size in a bowl (2-3 hours), transfer it onto a rolling board covered with some flour. The dough will 
turned out loose. Split it in half with a plastic scraper.  Using a rolling pin and more flour if needed, make a round, flat shape (from the first half), not too thin. Transfer it onto a baking sheet. Drizzle it with oil. With your fingers, stretch the dough some more if needed. Repeat with the other half. Let dough raise on the sheets for 1/2 hour.

Meanwhile... prepare beets. Preheat oven to 250C/500C. Place all the chopped beets (roots, stems and leaves) on a half baking sheet. Drizzle generously with olive oil, add three generous pinches of salt. Set it in the hot oven for 20 minutes, mixing it once half way through the process. Take it out of the heat.

Back to bread. Flip one sheet of dough on top of the other. Keep the sheets closely together, almost touching. The dough from the top sheet should fall down on top of the bottom one. Place the sandwich in the hot oven for 15 minutes, till golden. Take it out of the oven. While the focaccia is still hot, using a bread knife, cut in into the bread just a bit, all around it. Lift the top layer. Set it aside.

Spread the bottom part with goat cheese. Cover with roasted beets, spoon some yogurt randomly. Dash it with freshly ground black pepper and drizzle with olive oil. Close the sandwich, cut and serve.

  • bread turned out chewy with a hint of sweetness from rye;
  • beets - gave three different textures and flavors: from the roots, stems and leaves;
  • yogurt added just a touch of sourness and a refreshing sauce to combine it all;
  • goat cheese - a light, creamy spread that tastes so good...


  1. Ela, I really enjoy what you have been cooking in your kitchen..esp. those baby roots. Thank you for sharing this great sandwich.

  2. I love anything with beets and this sandwich is no exception! This flavor combo sounds out of this world :)

  3. Oh wow Ela I am loving this baby beets and goats cheese - you have me sold!

  4. Such a great combination of some of the best ingredients! Love the addition of the baby roasted beets!

  5. I could eat beets every day! I just wish my husband enjoyed them as I do :( They must be delicious on that lovely focaccia with goat cheese.

  6. This sandwich looks so good! I have never tried beets with goat cheese! Must try!

  7. Delicious! I've never tried beets on a sandwich before but it looks and sounds delicious.

  8. Scrumptious! This focaccia sandwich is ever so mouthwatering.



  9. I like beets and their greens but never thought to use them in a sandwich…I bet it is great.

  10. A really good sandwich makes the perfect meal. I love how rustic this looks. I can imagine all the flavors digging into it!

  11. Impressed you made your own focaccia! and the fillings are a great selection too.

  12. What a lovely sandwich Ela, this is something I would of not thought of on my own and it really looks wonderful. Love this combination!

  13. These look amazing!! What a fun and fresh recipe! Perfect for a Summer brunch!

  14. Wow - I love this sandwich. I adore Focaccia anyway and beets are amazing. Such an interesting combination - love it!

  15. This sandwich looks gorgeous Ela! I love the pretty color of the baby beets and how healthy and fresh this dish is :)

  16. I never had roasted beets before... looks like it's time to change that!

  17. Yum! I love these all together. How elegant =)

  18. These sandwiches sound wonderful. I would probably substitute golden beets because I just love them!

  19. These sandwiches look perfect! I love the combination of flavors, beets are great in so many recipes!

  20. I have never tried beets in sandwich. It must be good with yogurt and feta combination.