Monday, November 1, 2010

Cook's Illustrated Pissaladière-Onion, Olive & Anchovy Tart

I was flipping through a pile of old Cook's Illustrated at my sister's. Among other reason that make Cook's Illustrated superior to other culinary publications is the fact that there is always a recipe that you want to make right away. Pissaladière was the one that I ran into. Pissaladière is a simple french staple that can be served for simple dinner, brunch, or a wine paring event. To me it feels that the dish should be accompanied by a vegetable or a green, which, in my case, was a bed of arugula with shaved Pecorino and thin slices of the celery root. Simply blanched green beans or lightly roasted carrots should also compliment the salty and buttery taste of Pissaladière well. A glass of local 2007 Syrah from Delaplane Cellars is was a great pairing. 
2 cups of bread flour and about 1/2 cup for rolling and shaping
1 teaspoon instant yeast
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 tablespoon olive oil and another 2 teaspoons of olive oil for brushing and shaping the dough
1/2 cup hot water mixed with 1/2 cup room temperature water
Mix all dry ingredients with oil. Pour in water in three batches mixing gently until the dough forms a ball.
With well floured hands transfer the dough into a floured board and knead for 3-5 minutes until the dough becomes smooth.
Oil a large bowl or a 32 ounce (minimum) tupperware. Place the dough in a bowl/tupperware, roll around once to cover all of the dough with oil, and cover with a plastic wrap/top. Let the dough rise in a draft free place for an hour or leave it overnight in a refrigerator.
2 tablespoons olive oil from anchovies
4 large Vidalia onions, diced into 1/2 inc pieces (4 cups)
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon brandy/cognac
1 tablespoon water
Heat the oil on a medium heat in a non-stick or cast iron pan. 
Add onions and salt. Cook for 10 minutes until onions start to brown.
Add brandy/cognac and let the alcohol evaporate. Lower the heat, add water, and cook stirring every 5 minutes for another 20 minutes until onions become golden brown.

the steps of Delaplane Cellars
1/2 cup black pitted olives, roughly chopped
8 anchovy fillets packed in oil, roughly chopped plus 9-10 additional anchovy fillets
thinly sliced green onions (optional)
Preheat the oven to 500F.
Once the dough doubles, with well oiled hands remove the from the container, and divide into 2 equal parts, leaving one in a container while you are shaping the other. 
Shape the dough by pulling and folding the edges of the dough ball in the center. Imagine you are folding chamomile petals.
Flip the dough seam side down and start stretching it by pressing and pulling it with a palm of one hand while holding the other end. Add flour if the dough sticks. Lay on a baking sheet or a pizza stone sprinkled with corn meal or lined with a parchment papper. Repeat with the second piece of dough.
Brush the dough with olive oil. 
Scatter onions, olives, chopped and anchovies. Layer anchovy fillets.
Bake until edges of the dough become golden brown about 15-17 minutes.
Cool and sprinkle with green onions.


  1. It's nice to find ways to cook anchovies and sardines. I get tired of eating them cold at times and making puttanesca sauce seems like a waste.

  2. KMC: you can always make Cesar dressing with them