Jun 16, 2014

Young cabbage focaccia rolls

Young, Spring cabbage tastes nothing like the Winter variety. It's light and sweet. Even better roasted and rolled into a focaccia...

Young cabbage focaccia rolls
by Gray Apron
time: 20 min preparation / 3 hrs inactive / (25+20) 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 1/2 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
small young cabbage head, washed, patted dry and thinly shredded 

2 young onions, peeled and sliced
450 g (1 lb) cherry tomatoes
1 teaspoon coarse salt
1 teaspoon dry thyme
1 cup tomato sauce mixed with 1 chopped garlic clove
28 g (1 oz) Parmesan cheese, broken in pieces
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). Using your hands, mix in the yeast mix. With the mixer running on "stir" and equipped with a needle attachment, gradually pour in the water mix, checking often if the flour from the bottom of the bowl is getting incorporated.  Knead the dough for 10 minutes (total). 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. Line a baking sheets with parchment paper

Meanwhile... prepare filling. Preheat oven to 220C/425C. Place shredded cabbage, onions and tomatoes a baking sheet. Drizzle generously with olive oil, add salt and thyme. Set it in the hot oven for 25 minutes, mixing it once half way through the process. Take it out of the heat. Let it cool to touch. Put tomatoes aside.

Back to bread. 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. Using a rolling pin and more flour if needed, make a rectangle shape, not too thin. Spread tomato sauce with garlic on top. Arrange roasted cabbage, Parmesan pieces and finish it with some fresh ground pepper. Roll the focaccia into a roulade, starting from a longer side. Using a big bread knife, cut it in 12 slices. Arrange them onto the lined baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil. Cover the sheet with a cotton cloth and let it rise for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile...preheat oven (if cooled) to 220C/425F (fan forced function). Place the sheet with focaccia rolls in the oven for about 20 minutes (max). Remove from the oven. Arrange roasted tomatoes on top and serve.

Serving suggestion: crush tomato between your fingers and smudge its flesh and juices all over the bread. 

  • I though (again) that I just made a big mess;
  • I was able to roll the dough OK, using my forearm, but cutting the slices was a different story;
  • everything was falling out and apart;
  • but I just arranged what I had in my hands on the sheet, closely together; 
  • the rolls rose beautifully on the sheet and even more in the oven;
  • it's the first time I've roasted cabbage; it tasted fresh and sweet; no bad, stale cabbage taste;
  • during cooling off (after roasting), cabbage softens and reduces in volume ... you don't need to cook it to nothing in the oven;
  • the rolls are great warm, cold, same day and the next one as well.


  1. These rolls look and sounds fabulous! A great creation.



  2. Very original idea, never saw cabbage used like this with focaccia, and the small tomatoes like that...makes it all mouthwatering!

  3. Oh wow, these look delicious! I love any kind of homemade bread and then combined with the cabbage and the cherry tomatoes - so good!

  4. Looks so delicious! I love cabbage, but don't have many recipes for cooking it. Such an original recipe!

  5. These rolls look so delicious!! I love that you made them from scratch Ela! Those cherry tomatoes look so good.

  6. I would never have thought of making bread with cabbage - these look scrumptious, Ela!

  7. Oh super yum to these rolls! Love all these veggies.. happy harvest recipe!

  8. Superb idea to have some cabbages in foccacia, bet it tasted as yummy as the photo :D

  9. These rolls look delicious Ela! The cabbage and cherry tomatoes sound amazing in here :)

  10. Save a little piece for me Ela! Delicious!

  11. Rustic and delicious! I love the idea of veggie filling.

  12. I'd love to transport myself to your place, just for a bite of that focaccia..(in my dreams!)

  13. I don't think I've ever had young cabbage, but I know I'd adore it as I'm certainly an old cabbage fan :) Your rolls sound fantastic!

  14. These look gorgeous. I have never tried anything like this before! Bookmarking!

  15. Fabulous, Ela! Dinner all wrapped up in that delicious looking focaccia! Those roasted veggies will have so much flavor.

  16. These rolls look so good Ela!

  17. I can just imagine the delicate flavour of young cabbage... how delicious!

  18. I have to see if the farmers market sells young cabbage. I'd love to try these!