Mmmm… one of my favourite dishes my sister Gabi used to make frequently was a Provencale pissaladiere. A delicious mix of caramelised onions, piqued by tomato, olive and anchovy as I remember. I sort of recreated/bastardised/enhanced/changed beyond reasonable recognition, whatever your perception, this delight last week by hybridising it with my obsessive ricotta and puff-pastry fave. It was a Good Idea I think….even if it isn’t pissaladiere and super quick to make for lunch (if you have normal sized onions anyway, rather than millions of irritating, ridiculous ones about the size of a ping-pong ball – although they were my inspiration as I just wanted to rid the kitchen of them).
Lots of onions, sliced very fine
Nutmeg, salt, pepper and a pinch of sugar
butter and olive oil
Tub of good ricotta
2 cloves of garlics, minced finely
few ounces of mature cheddar, grated
thyme, salt, pepper
preserved peppers antipasti, sliced in strips
sheet of puff pastry
* * * * *
The making of:
First, do the tedious onion slicing and then throw them in a pan on a low heat with the nutmeg (be generous), salt, pepper, butter, olive oil and sugar. Sweat this down, stirring occasionally until all reduced and delicious.
Meanwhile, mix up the ricotta with the garlic, cheddar, thyme, salt and pepper. On a metal roasting pan or baking sheet, unfurl your puff pastry (yes, the lazy ready-rolled version is great. Never, ever buy shortcrust though as it is an unnecessary sin against cookery. In fact, make that against humanity). Score around the pastry, about an inch from the edge to provide a good crust. In the inner rectangle you’ve just drawn, spread the ricotta mixture out. Ladle the onions on top and spread around evenly. Then decorate with the sliced antipasti peppers, place a caper in each space in the lattice and bake in a hot oven, about 190 C until the pastry is golden and the onions begin to sizzle a bit. So very moreish.