Welcome to Provence! I would love to greet you that way and actually be in Provence...welcoming you to our humble little abode in the French countryside.
Earlier this month I announced I would be hosting at Food 'n Flix for the movie A Good Year. My announcement post and much detail may be found HERE.
(If you would like a detailed book review of A Good Year, check out Novel Meals here).
The main character in the story, Max Skinner, takes a trip to Provence with the purpose of selling his newly inherited estate. The plan is a a quick visit and selling it as soon as possible. Then life slows for him as he is immersed in memories of his childhood, his uncle and French culture.
For my inspired dish I prepared a Pissaladière. It was served at Rousel's home:
“The lamb is always good and so is the salmon. They serve it with sorrel sauce. And you should try the pissaladiere.”
Pissaladière is a savory, Provencal onion tart layered with olives, anchovies, and herbs. Serve it cut into little rectangles for a fabulous appetizer.
· 2 tablespoons butter
· 6 yellow onions, chopped
· 2 teaspoons demerara sugar (raw sugar)
· ¼ teaspoon salt
· ¼ teaspoon black pepper
· ½ teaspoon dried thyme
· 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
· 1 sheet puff pastry, thawed
· 20 anchovy fillets
· 20 black olives in oil, drained
· 2 teaspoons olive oil
· 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and demerara sugar and sauté, stirring frequently, until the onions become tender and start to turn golden. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and thyme. Stir the mixture and transfer the skillet to the preheated oven. Cook for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are wilted, very soft, and are a medium gold throughout.
Add the vinegar during the last 5 minutes of cooking. Remove from the onions from the oven and set them aside while preparing the pastry for the pissaladiere. until they reach room temperature, and then serve.
Raise the oven temperature to 425F. Press the thawed pastry into a rectangle on a 12-inch by 18-inch baking sheet, building it up a bit around the edges. Spread the pastry with the onion confit, leaving 1 inch of dough uncovered around the edges of the pastry. Arrange the anchovy filets and olives on the pissaladière. Bake it for 15 to 25 minutes, until the pastry has puffed up, turned golden, and crisped.
Remove the pissaladière from the oven and sprinkle the olive oil and fresh thyme across the hot surface of the tart. Cut it into rectangles and serve very warm or at room temperature.
This made a great appetizer and I would probably make it again but change out the toppings. Certainly the caramelized onions will be making an appearance (they are so delicious) but I may want to used grilled zucchini or goat cheese next time.
So, this is my effort for A Good Year, both movie and book. If you'd like to join in there is still time. Entries accepted through October! Au revoir!
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