Pissaladière

You’d think a thousand words would be long enough for one of my Princeton Packet “In The Kitchen” recipe columns, but noooo, I regularly run out of space for a recipe or two I wish I could have included, such as the French Pissaladière, below.  If you don’t think that qualifies for the Ethnic/Casual focus of my column, note on the link for the book that Publisher’s Weekly deemed it “Ethnic Home Cooking” back in 1996 when the book came out. 

My full column, with other tomato recipes (tarts and a gratin) is in today’s print edition of the Princeton Packet, but the bonus recipe below is for you online readers.  Bon Appétit!

Tomato, Olive, and Anchovy Tart (Pissaladière)

From “French Farmhouse Cookbook,” Susan Hermann Loomis, Workman, 1996

6-8 appetizer servings or 4-7 main course servings

2 pounds onions, peeled and thinly sliced

1/4 cup olive oil

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 10 1/2-inch tart shell, prebaked (a good recipe is in the book, another is on the Epicurious website)

3 slightly underripe medium tomatoes, cored and cut into thin slices

18 anchovy fillets

20 cured black olives, with pits

Place the onions and oil in a large heavy skillet over medium heat.  Toss so the onions are coated with the oil and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until the onions are completely tender and sweet, about 40 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Place the prebaked pastry shell, still in its pan, on a baking sheet.  Transfer the onions to the shell, spreading evenly.

Arrange the tomato slices in slightly overlapping concentric circles over the onions.  Arrange the anchovy fillets atop the tomatoes, making 9 crosses with them.  Evenly distribute the olives on the top of the pissaladière, pressing them gently into the tart so they don’t roll off.  Carefully place the baking sheet in the center of the oven and bake until the tart is hot through and slightly golden on top and the tomatoes are tender, about 35 minutes.

Remove the tart form the oven and remove the sides of the pan.  Let the tart cool for about 10 minutes before serving.  (Remind diners that the olives have pits.)

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