Tomato and Parmesan Focaccia with Caramelized Onions

So I have a new life calling. And its not baking cakes or saving the world.

Its getting tickets to the Ellen Degeneres Show.

Do you know how to do this? Because I think its actually impossible. The website told me to ‘click’ on the date I wanted to see the show on. So I did. Simple right?


You can’t click on any day. The little cursor turns into a hand when you wave it over the calendar… taunting you… pretending its on your side…but then refuses to click on a date.

But its ok. I’m not discouraged. I’ve decided to check the show website as often as I check my e-mail which translates into like once every 10 minutes… which is about 144 a times day… 1,0008 times a week….

I need to layoff my e-mail.

But now on to really more important things, like focaccia! Warm tender doughy focaccia sprinkled in sizzling tomatoes and salty parmesan…. Mmmmm

Take that Ellen. That’s what your missing.

But really, this focaccia is delicious. And even better, this is an amazing lighter recipe that doesn’t compromise any of the delicious richness or flavor of traditional focaccia. By creating a topping using fresh herbs and sautéing onions and garlic I was able to add a lot of flavor without a lot of calories.

Another tip- parmesan cheese is often thought of as a “no-no” food, but actually its a great way to add a lot of flavor with only a little bit of ingredient. You only need a few grates of parmesan to get the full body flavor, unlike a more mild cheese like mozzarella.

Also, if you’re someone who’s usually a little cautious about tackling a bread baking recipe, don’t be scared. This recipe is truly simple. you knead the dough once and let it rise twice. It’s time consuming but very easy and soooo worth it. There’s something so self-satisfying about baking your own bread. I’m not telling you to go all Martha Stewart or boycott Pepperidge Farm, but every once in a while its such a treat to enjoy freshly baked bread from your own oven.


Tomato and Parmesan Focaccia with Caramelized Onions

(Adapted from Cooking Light)



  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 package dry yeast
  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1/4 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Cooking spray


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups thinly sliced yellow onion
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 12 (1/8-inch-thick) slices tomato
  • 1/3 cup (about 1 1/2 ounces) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh basil
  1. To prepare dough, combine first 4 ingredients in a large bowl, stirring to dissolve yeast; let stand 5 minutes. 
  2. Add 2 1/2 cups flour, cornmeal, and 1 teaspoon salt to yeast mixture; stir well to combine.
  3. Turn dough out onto a floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes, or until smooth and elastic. Add flour, 1 tablespoon at a time to prevent dough from sticking to hands. 
  4. Place dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning to coat top. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°) for about 1 hour and 30 minutes or until doubled in size. (Gently press two fingers into dough. If indentation remains, dough has risen enough.)
  5. To prepare topping, heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, garlic, dried basil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper; cook 20 minutes or until onion is golden, stirring occasionally. Cool.
  6. Arrange tomato slices between several layers of paper towels. Let stand 10 minutes, pressing down occasionally.
  7. Uncover dough. Punch dough down; cover and let rest 5 minutes. Pat dough into an even layer in a 15 x 10-inch jelly-roll pan coated with cooking spray. Cover and let rise 30 minutes.
  8. Preheat oven to 425°.
  9. Uncover dough. Arrange onion mixture over dough, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Top with tomato slices; sprinkle with cheese. Bake at 425° for 23 minutes or until browned. Sprinkle with fresh basil. Cool at least 10 minutes before serving.
Yields 16 servings
Nutrition per serving: 138 calories; 3.5 grams fat



  1. […] in my blog entry I posted yesterday (Tomato and Parmesan Focaccia with Caramelized Onions) I talked about how impossible it’s been for me to get tickets to the Ellen Degeneres show. […]