This caramelised onion dip with warm focaccia is sweet, sharp and citrusy. It has the aerated texture required with a crisp, crunchy edge, making it pretty perfect for dipping into stuff!
Prep time: 4 hours
Cooking time: 90 minutes
For the Caramelised Onion Dip:
100g cashew nuts
The juice of 1½ lemons
1 large white onion
1 tbsp garlic oil
1 tsp light soft brown sugar
For the Focaccia:
225g gluten-free plain flour
4 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp xanthan gum
1 heaped tsp egg replacer, whisked together with 2 tbsp water
250ml hot water
1 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
Stems of rosemary, optional
A pinch of sea salt flakes
Place the cashew nuts in a bowl and cover with water, leave to soak overnight or for a minimum of 4 hours.
Once soaked, drain the cashews from the water and place in a high-powered blender with the juice of 1 lemon and 100ml of water. Blitz together, stopping regularly to scrape down the sides, until you have a smooth and creamy consistency.
You can do this in a food processor (the smaller the bowl the better) but it will take you a lot longer and you may find that the final result is a little grainier than it should be. Transfer the mixture to a bowl, cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
Next, peel and finely slice the onion into half moons. Heat the garlic oil into a heavy-based frying pan until hot, add the sliced onion, the remaining lemon juice, a good pinch of sea salt and the brown sugar. Fry over a low heat until the onions are soft and caramelised – about 25 minutes.
Fold the onions into the cashew cream mixture until combined, season to taste and then chill until ready to use. This spread will last for up to 3 days if refrigerated.
Preheat the oven to 200c and liberally grease the baking tin with olive oil. Place the flour, baking powder, xanthan gum, egg replacer and oil into a food processor, pour over the water and blitz until you have a smooth and creamy dough – it should be dropping consistency but not completely liquid.
Alternatively, make up the egg replacer in a large mixing bowl, add the remaining dry ingredients, stir together and then add the remaining water, bit by bit, beating together until smooth and creamy.
Pour the mixture into the tin, level the top with the back of a spoon, pushing it into the corners of the tin and spreading it evenly. Now, use your fingertip to mark little dents and hills all over the dough – because it is such a liquid batter, you won’t be able to make solid holes, instead, just create little peaks and troughs in the surface of the bread. Now scatter over the rosemary leaves (if using), drizzle over the olive oil and sprinkle a little sea salt over the top.
Bake in the oven for 35 minutes or until just golden and crisp on top. Remove from the oven, turn out onto a wire rack and leave to cool for a few minutes before serving.
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