Chez Luce

Kitchen adventures on Wandsworth Common

I <3 Anchovies October 1, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — chezluce @ 8:20 am
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Today I want to share with you a gorgeous, oniony, sweet-salty creation called Pissaladière. It is a french version of pizza, using soft caremelised onions as the sauce, and topped with anchovies and (usually) olives.

 

A couple of years ago, I would have turned my nose up at the thought of olives and anchovies, but it just goes to show how tastes can change (or perhaps palates can be educated?) because now I cant get enough of either of them!

 

I like to serve this as a weeknight supper or saturday lunch, although it takes a couple of hours in total including proving the bread dough and caremelising the onions, there is actually very little work that goes into the dish for such amazing results.

 

To serve, I made a quick salad of lettuce, grated beetroot, sliced radishes and mixed sprouted seeds; dresed with a mustard vinaigrette.

 

If you think you don’t like anchovies, or don’t like the idea of putting little fish fillets on a pizza, I urge you to try this recipe – it may well change your mind, too 🙂

 

 

Pissaladière
Adapted from BBC Good Food

200g strong white bread flour
1 tsp salt
2 tsp easy blend dried yeast
150ml warm water
5 tbsp olive oil , plus extra for drizzling
1kg onions , thinly sliced
a few sprigs of thyme
2 tomatoes , skinned and chopped
1 can anchovy fillets, drained, fat ones halved lengthways
a handful of black olives (optional)

Tip the flour, salt and yeast into a bowl. Pour in the water, spoon in the oil and mix to a soft dough. Turn out on to a lightly floured surface and knead for 5 minutes until the dough is smooth and no longer sticky.
Return the dough to the bowl, cover with cling film or a damp tea towel and leave it to rise for 45 minutes to 1¼ hours or until the dough springs back when pressed. Don’t worry too much is it takes more or less time.
While the dough is rising, heat the oil in a large, deep frying pan or sauté pan, throw in the onions and fry gently for about 10 minutes until softened but not browned, stirring from time to time.
Sprinkle in the thyme and some salt and pepper, then tip in the tomatoes and stir well. Cover and cook gently for 45 minutes until the onions are meltingly soft, stirring occasionally and removing the lid for the last 10 minutes to reduce any liquid. Remove from the heat and leave to cool slightly.
Preheat the oven to 220C/gas 7/fan 200C. Lightly oil a shallow 23x33cm baking tin or tray. Knead the dough again briefly, then roll it out and press it into the tin. Don’t leave it to rise again.
Spread the onion mixture over the dough, then arrange the anchovies on top, making a criss-cross pattern. Stud each window between the anchovies with an olive (if using), then bake for 25-30 minutes until golden. Serve warm, cold or reheated, cut into squares.

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Go-to meal for a weeknight – Mediterranean Aubergine and Couscous Salad February 9, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — chezluce @ 1:17 pm
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Recipe: Mediterranean Aubergine and Couscous Salad

 

More often than not, one of our weeknight meals will consist of some roasted vegetables, a soft grain (pearl barley, short grain brown rice, couscous…) and some houmous or grilled halloumi. It’s a quick dish that can be thrown together quickly; the veg just need chucking in the oven for 40 minutes, if you use couscous it’s ready in 10 minutes’ soaking, and a few little extras make for a delicious meal that’s great for lunch the next day too.

 

I saw this recipe on Smitten Kitchen the other day when I was food-gawking (ok I spend a lot of time doing this…) and it is slightly different to what I normally do so I thought i’d give it a go.  And I was very impressed! I served it with Halloumi first, and added a spoonful of houmous (pictured) the next day for lunch.

 

It really is worth letting the veg get caremelised around the edges to intensify the savoury flavour, so leave them in for a bit longer than you would normally. Also, I do find raw sliced onions very harsh, so I soaked the slices in lemon juice for 15 minutes while the vegetables cooked to mellow them a little. It just seems to take some of the ‘onionyness’ away.

 

Now if only the weather in Britain matched the summery flavours of this dish!

 

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