Monterey Pepper Jack Spelt Focaccia Bread (with Tomatoes and Rosemary)



Monterey Pepper Jack Spelt Focaccia Bread (with Tomatoes and Rosemary)


Firstly, a confession. This spelt focaccia bread is not authentic. Not at all.

There are many recipes out there featuring authentic focaccia, but this isn’t one of them. In fact, this version is nothing like how it should be. Authentic focaccia bread isn’t round, isn’t made in a skillet and it certainly isn’t meant to have pillow-y soft dough like this one does.

However, I don’t care much for following the rules. If we all followed the rules of baking, we would never create new recipes. However, I do care that people might think this is what you’d find on a traditional Italian table, because it isn’t.

So, you may be asking, why bother calling it focaccia bread at all? Well, because I pushed my thumb in to make the classic focaccia indentations, that’s why. Sounds like a fair reason to me.


Monterey Pepper Jack Spelt Focaccia Bread (with Tomatoes and Rosemary)


While I am on with confessing, I have another admission. I don’t know anything about Monterey Jack. Other than it is delicious, that is. Mind you, what cheese isn’t? When Googling to find out more, it appears that it varies a bit – some are lighter in colour, whereas others are more orange. Some have peppers or chillies (Monterey Pepper Jack) like the one I used in this spelt focaccia recipe.

I picked up some in our local Lidl when it was Mexican week, and it is so incredibly spicy and flavourful, with a semi-hard consistency. I thought its amazing spicy bite would go so well with soft, doughy bread. I was right. Success!

This spelt focaccia bread recipe is made in a bread machine, but I am sure it can be adapted to make by hand (I just haven’t tried it personally). It makes an amazing side dish for pasta, barbecues and salads.

My whole family loved my spelt focaccia bread. It was light, doughy, cheesy and spicy all in one mouthful. I used a fairly small skillet, but it was more than enough to feed a family of four (even when those four snaffled it down like there was no tomorrow).


Monterey Pepper Jack Spelt Focaccia Bread (with Tomatoes and Rosemary)

Made with spelt flour and Monterey Pepper Jack cheese, this spelt focaccia bread recipe is studded with tomatoes and flavoured with rosemary.
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Keyword Spelt Focaccia Bread
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 18 minutes
Proofing/machine 2 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 28 minutes



  • 300ml milk
  • 1 egg
  • 40g Monteray Pepper Jack cheese (chopped into small pieces)
  • 20g butter
  • 400g spelt flour
  • 7g dried yeast
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder


  • Around 100g Monteray Pepper Jack
  • Two baby/cherry tomatoes
  • Swig of olive oil
  • Sprinkling of rosemary
  • Sea salt to taste


  • Add the milk, egg, cheese and butter to your bread machine. Then throw in the flour, yeast, salt, sugar, oregano and garlic powder, taking care to keep the yeast and salt separate as much as possible. Set your machine to make dough.
  • When the dough is ready, knead quickly until a rough ball forms. Grease a small skillet pan with olive oil and place the dough inside. Using your fingers, press and manipulate the dough until it has been smoothed out and covers the whole skillet. A good dough will fight you tooth and nail every inch of the way, so if it refuses to cooperate, it’s a great sign. I recommend doing the above, leaving for five minutes, then come back and repeat.
  • When the dough is ready, heat the oven to 220ºC (430ºF). Take your dough and using your thumb, press indentations all over the top and place tiny bits of cheese and tomato in them. Again, a good dough will bounce back quickly, so just make sure everything is pushed into the bread (if your thumb is sticking, use a little flour on it to make the job easier). Cover with a tea towel and let the dough rest for a further 15 minutes or so.
  • Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle over the rosemary and sea salt. Bake in the middle of the oven for around 15-18 minutes. It will be ready when the top is very firm and nice and golden.
  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Slice then eat warm or cold with your favourite pasta dish or with a barbecue.


I use grams in my recipes because I think weighing ingredients is the most accurate system. If you would prefer to use imperial (cup) measurements you can convert my grams to cups with Cook it Simply.
Monterey Pepper Jack Spelt Focaccia Bread (with Tomatoes and Rosemary)

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