Pissaladière (Mediterranean Onion Tart)

Pissaladière (Mediterranean Onion Tart)

Serves about 8 — the dish is of Mediterranean French origin and may have originated with a similar Roman-era dish (and is a predecessor to pizza), but my version is “vaguely Greek style”

you will need:

1 350g package frozen of phyllo, thawed
6tbsp herb-and-garlic olive-oil & one extra tbsp
a little over 1kg of sweet yellow onions — thinly sliced
¾tbsp thyme (dried)
5tbsp tapenade (Ruadhan’s recipe to follow)
55g anchovy fillets, halved lengthwise
@15 Kalamata olives, whole and pitted
fresh ground lemon-pepper, dried garlic, and dried Greek oregano to taste

  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF (200ºC)
  2. Roll out phyllo onto 11″x8″ lightly floured baking dish and spread most of one tablespoon of oil over the top layer of phyllo with a pastry brush, then roll the edges of the phyllo in to create a ridged crust and brush a little bit of oil onto the crust — you may need a whole tablespoon and a dash more — set this aside and let the flavours soak in. Meanwhile, in a large heavy skillet with tight lid (I prefer a 12″ round cast-iron one), heat to high and then add onions and 6tbsp of oil; turn the onions until well-coated with oil
  3. Take down heat to lowest possible simmer; cover onions and simmer for 45min to 2hours, turning sparsely, until onions are clear and very soft (this may vary depending on how large a pan you use, a smaller pan with the onions more tightly packed will take longer than a very large pan with the onions more loosely packed — if the pan is very large, you may also need to concentrate the steam by packing the onions in with a wettened piece of waxed paper).
  4. Stir in thyme, lemon-pepper, dried garlic, and oregano — you will not need salt, as the anchovies will have enough. Meanwhile, pop the phyllo into the oven for 15min, remove and let cool for a few
  5. Spread Yummy Tapenade over the bottom of the shell, and when the onions are ready, spoon them over the tapenade and spread out evenly
  6. arrange the anchovy fillet halves in a decorative lattice/crosshatch pattern with the olives centered in-between
  7. Loosely top with foil and put the whole tart into the oven for about another half an hour
  8. Allow to cool completely before portioning

Serving suggestions:
Keftedes and green salad