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Sunday, June 20, 2010

Cookbook Challenge: Week 31, French


Recipe: Pissaladiere
From: The Australian Women's Weekly "Kitchen"

Dear Cookbook Challengers in Melbourne! See the end of this post for details of a meet up!

The theme for this week's Cookbook Challenge is French, and initially I was stumped. What could I make for French week that would be fairly easy and only involved ingredients already in my pantry?

But after a bit more thinking, I realised there's TONS of things that come from French cooking! I almost made a dessert (it was a toss up between brulee or clafoutis) but, despite all the sweet things on this blog, I don't actually have a huge sweet tooth! (Lots of sweet things make an appearance here because they're easier to photograph.....! Confession time!) So rather than dessert, I made pissaladiere - an onion and anchovy tart.


The recipe I followed for the pissaladiere had a bread type base, although I believe pastry can also be used. The topping is made from a rather large amount of slowly cooked onions, on to which anchovy fillets and olives are placed. Oh. Notice anything missing on mine? I ran out of olives so mine is sans olives!

Despite the missing olives, the pissaladiere was DELICIOUS. There's something about the combination of the bready base, sweet onions and the salty fishiness of the anchovies that really did it for me. I know lots of people don't like anchovies, but gosh it's worth acquiring the taste for them, just so you can eat pissaladiere!

And now an announcement for all Cookbook Challengers in Melbourne! April and I have been discussing a meet up and we have decided on a date. It'll be a potluck lunch on Sunday 11 July - with the theme being Spanish (which is the theme for the week after - so if you come, you get to tick off your dish for the following week!). Email me or comment on this post if you're interested. And if you're a lapsed Cookbook Challenger, perhaps this could be the motivation to get back into it?! :)

See previous Cookbook Challenge posts here.



From AWW Kitchen

Serves 6

50g butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 large onions (600g), peeled and sliced thinly
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 bay leaf
1 sprig fresh thyme
1 tablespoon baby capers, rinsed
3/4 cup (110g) self-raising flour
3/4 cup (11g) plain flour
30g butter, extra
3/4 cup (180ml) buttermilk
20 drained anchovy fillets, halved lengthways
1/2 cup (90g) small seeded black olives

Heat the butter and oil in a large saucepan over low heat and add the onions, garlic, bay leaf and thyme. Cover the pot and let the mixture cook gently for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. You want the onions to be soft but not browned.

Let the mixture cook uncovered for a further 10 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and thyme, and stir in the capers.

Preheat the oven to 220°C and oil an oven tray.

Make the base by sifting the flours into a large bowl. Rub in the extra butter, and then stir in the buttermilk to form a soft dough (mine needed more flour). Turn the dough on to a lightly floured surface and knead until it is smooth.

Roll the dough into a rectangular shape that is about 25cm x 35cm. Place on to the tray.

Spread the onion mixture over the dough, up to the edges. Top with the anchovy fillets, placing them in a diamond pattern. Put an olive in the middle of each diamond.

Bake for about 30 minutes, or until the base is crisp.

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