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Focaccia Bread Art for Beautiful Food With Students

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Focaccia Bread Art Recipe for Family and Consumer Science Classes

If you are looking for a way to make beautiful decorative focaccia bread with your culinary arts or FACS classes you will want to keep reading!

Did you know that decorative focaccia bread that looks like a Van Gough painting started in 2018? A baker by the name of Teri Culletto went to a Van Gough exhibit and was inspired to create focaccia bread that resembled the beautiful garden paintings.

History of Focaccia Art

Actual focaccia bread dates back thousands of years and is known as a delicious Italian side dish or bread used for sandwiches.

focaccia bread with students project for culinary arts project and family and consumer science food lab projects for high school students
Garden Focaccia Bread Art made by our Culinary high school students

How to Have a Focaccia Art Food Lab with Students

Suggested Lesson Plan Order:

Day 1– We read about focaccia bread using this focaccia garden worksheet and broke students into groups of 2 or 3. The groups of students planned what theirs would look like. Our special needs students loved this project as well and one of the autistic students chose to work alone and did an amazing job!

Discuss the ingredients: Focaccia bread typically contains flour, yeast, water, olive oil, and salt. You can talk about the importance of each ingredient and how they work together to create the final product.

focaccia bread art
Focaccia bread lesson plan
that is no-prep and ready to go!

Day 2– We made the dough and then refrigerated it, decorated and baked it the next day. Here is the recipe that we used to make the focaccia bread. It was delicious!

Day 3– Take the dough out, let it rise before the classes come in, smeared the olive oil on it, and pressed the dimples in it. Then for the fun part, the students decorate the bread with their chosen ingredients. Students chopped their vegetables and used their plans to help them. This student decided to map out the design on the cutting board before putting it on the dough.

Encourage creativity! Allow your students to get creative with their toppings and experiment with different flavors and ingredients. This is a great way to have them explore herbs and spices.

Using the judge’s sheet in the worksheet packet, we had staff members judge the focaccia bread but you can also have students do that. The kids really enjoyed this project.

You can also have them practice basic food plating practices and serve pieces of the bread to staff members or classmates. Students definitely shine when they have the chance to share what they made with others.

Using fresh, in-season vegetables for the toppings is recommended. We used all colors of bell peppers, heirloom cherry tomatoes, Roma tomatoes, red onions, shallots, asparagus, green onions, and fresh herbs such as rosemary, sage, chives, and thyme. We also used green olives, black olives, capers, poppy seeds, and sesame seeds.

Focaccia Bread Video

We love the Regional Eats series on YouTube! Here is one that shows how traditional Italian Focaccia bread is made.

If you are in the middle of your bread unit and would like to read about making bagels we have a blog post for that as well.

Send us some pictures of your students’ focaccia bread creations! We would love to include them in this blog post. Email us at!

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