Pumpkin Fougasse | Happy Halloween!

pumpkin fougasse
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A flat, crusty bread from Southern France is perfect as an appetizer or as an accompaniment to a soup or stew! Made into a scary pumpkin shape, this year our Pumpkin Fougasse is not only a lovely side dish but also a Halloween decoration!

Have you ever wondered why we carve pumpkins at Halloween? I haven’t up until recently when I decided to shape my fougasse into a pumpkin for this years Halloween celebrations! In short, the tradition comes “from an Irish myth about Stingy Jack, who tricked the Devil for his own monetary gain. When Jack died, God didn’t allow him into heaven, and the Devil didn’t let him into hell, so Jack was sentenced to roam the earth for eternity. In Ireland, people started to carve demonic faces out of turnips to frighten away Jack’s wandering soul. When Irish immigrants moved to the U.S., they began carving jack-o’-lanterns from pumpkins, as these were native to the region” (Why do we Carve Pumpkins for Halloween?, Britannica), and in season and ready to harvest just in time for Halloween.

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What is Fougasse?

The Fougasse bread is a creation of Southern France, specifically from the Provence region, where it is typically served as a sharing starter. This bread is similar to Italian Focaccia, however is distinguished by the shape resembling a sheath of wheat, or a leaf created by rolling the dough thin and then making slashes with a sharp razor. Whilst the dough can be made either by hand, we make it in a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment, as it can be sticky and difficult to knead.

Slashed open areas in the dough help the bread bake quickly making these loaves a crust lover’s delight because they maximize the surface area of the bread that gets crusty. However, using vegetables in the bread (in this case, pumpkin or butternut squash) makes the crust softer, similar to sandwich bread.

pumpkin fougasse

How to Make Pumpkin Fougasse?

Cut your pumpkin into wedges. Scoop out the seeds. Score the flesh and rub with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and roast in the oven for 40 minutes, until soft and golden. Scoop out the soft flesh from the skin with a spoon. Leave to cool down completely.

Place the pumpkin flesh into a food processor (we love Kenwood) and blend into a puree.

To make the dough, in a bowl of your stand mixer, mix the strong flour, yeast, salt, water, pumpkin puree and olive oil.

Place the bowl in your stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment and knead for 8-10 minutes on medium speed. The dough will be quite sticky but should become smooth and elastic.

*** if you’re using food colouring to make the orange pumpkin and a green stalk, take a bit of the dough out towards the end of the kneading process and mix in the green food colouring. Add the orange food colouring to the main dough bowl, and knead until fully incorporated***

Shape a ball of dough (or two separate ones for the pumpkin and the stalk) and place it in a lightly greased bowl. Cover and leave to prove for 2 hours.

Once doubled in size, split your dough in half and line two baking trays with baking parchment (we recommend Bacofoil baking parchment – it is strong and lasts forever).

Shape pumpkins (or any other shape) by flattening the dough with a rolling pin, stretching the dough with your hands and using a sharp knife/ bread scorer. Attach the pumpkin stalk if you made one.

Place the trays in a warm spot for 30 minutes covered with a lightly oiled cling film.

Preheat the oven to 200 C Fan. Just before baking, make sure you stretch out any cuts you made for the eyes or mouth of the pumpkin using your fingers so that they don’t close completely whilst baking.

Beat a small egg with 1 tbsp of water. Using a pastry brush, brush the top of the fougasse with the egg (you don’t need to use all of it).

Bake your fougasses for 18-20 minutes until golden and crusty. Once baked, transfer onto a wire rack to cool completely.


Happy Halloween, everyone! If you’re looking to make a Haloween inspired main, try our ‘Turn-into-a-Pumpkin-at-Midnight’ Risotto – Perfect Halloween Dinner.

For other bread recipes, have a look at some of our simple step-by-step recipes below:

Pumpkin Fougasse

A flat, crusty bread from Southern France is perfect as an appetizer or as an accompaniment to a soup or stew! Made into a scary pumpkin shape, this year our Pumpkin Fougasse is not only a lovely side dish but also a Halloween decoration!
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Prep Time 1 hr
Cook Time 20 mins
Proving Time: 2 hrs 30 mins
Total Time 3 hrs 50 mins
Course Bread, Side Dish
Cuisine French
Servings 8 portions
Calories 262 kcal

Ingredients
 
 

  • 200 g pumpkin
  • 500 g strong white flour
  • 7 g fast action yeast
  • 260 g water
  • 8 g salt
  • 20 ml olive oil
  • 1 egg + 1 tbsp of water for eggwash
  • green and orange food colouring optional

Instructions
 

  • Cut your pumpkin into wedges. Scoop out the seeds. Score the flesh and rub with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and roast in the oven for 40 minutes, until soft and golden. Scoop out the soft flesh from the skin with a spoon, and mash. Leave to cool down completely.
  • Place the pumpkin flesh into a food processor and blend into a puree.
  • To make the dough, in a bowl of your stand mixer, mix the strong flour, yeast, salt, water, pumpkin puree and olive oil.
  • Place in your stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment and knead for 8-10 minutes on medium speed. The dough will be quite sticky but should become smooth and elastic.
  • *** if you're using food colouring to make the orange pumpkin and a green stalk, take a bit of the dough out towards the end of the kneading process and mix in the green food colouring. Add the orange food colouring to the main dough bowl, and knead until fully incorporated***
  • Shape a ball of dough and place it in a lightly greased bowl. Cover and leave to prove for 2 hours.
  • Once doubled in size, split your dough in half and line two baking trays with baking parchment.
  • Shape pumpkins (or any other shape) by flattening the dough with a rolling pin, stretching the dough with your hands and using a sharp knife/ bread scorer. Attach the pumpkin stalk if you made one.
  • Place the trays in a warm spot for 30 minutes covered with ha lightly oiled cling film.
  • Preheat the oven to 200° C Fan. Just before baking, make sure you stretch out any cuts you made for the eyes or mouth of the pumpkin using your fingers so that they don't close completely whilst baking.
  • Beat a small egg with 1 tbsp of water. Using a pastry brush, brush the top of the fougasse with the egg (you don't need to use all of it).
  • Bake your fougasses for 18-20 minutes until golden and crusty. Once baked, transfer onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Nutrition

Calories: 262kcalCarbohydrates: 47gProtein: 8gFat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 20mgSodium: 399mgPotassium: 155mgFiber: 2gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 2159IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 19mgIron: 1mg
Keyword Bread with Pumpkin Puree, Butternut Squash Bread, Butternut Squash Fougasse, Fougasse Recipe, Halloween Bread, Halloween Fougasse, Halloween Recipes, Pumpkin Bread, Pumpkin Fougasse
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Pumpkin Fougasse

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