Saturday, October 16th 2010.
7:14 am: stumble out of bed, stick a bagel in the toaster and boil some water for coffee. Remember that today is the day I need to work on the next Project Food Blog challenge!
Get back in my bed.
7:30 am: Read cookbooks in bed looking for pizza inspiration. Directions for challenge say “one recipe, 72 variations”.
Feeling hopelessly lost and confused.
Drink more coffee and try to think about what is in my refrigerator without actually getting out of bed.
7:38 am: Saw photo of large onion. Have an epiphany! Dexter looks scared.
7:44 am: No time for make-up—brush teeth, pull on yoga clothes, grab baseball hat and keys and am out the door.
Wonder if I had too much coffee.
Wonder if I was born in the wrong century.
Wonder what Nigella Lawson is making for dinner tonight.
8:10 am: Arrive at destination! Race in and buy onions, tomato sauce and a jar of pesto.
8:30 am: Drive to next destination: Sur la Table. Wait outside in the cold until store opens. Peer through windows and see yummy things.
Call my mother.
9:30 am: Arrive home and throw together some Eat Live Run pizza dough.
Hop online and read up on Pissaladiere, or French onion tart, a pizza-like specialty in Nice made with cooked onions, pesto, olives and sundried tomatoes.
Daydream about going back to France.
Remind myself to research pain au chocolat recipes.
Eat a tiny piece of chocolate from my secret drawer.
9:45 am: set dough on table to rise and start slicing my onions.
Wipe away tears.
10:00 am: Toss all the onions in my biggest pot and add a splash of water, some salt, pepper and oregano. Then, put the heat on medium low, cover and let cook for a little over an hour.
Wonder what I got myself into.
11:00 am: Realize I’m actually quite hungry. Fix an hot open-faced ham and gruyere sandwich and a salad. Drink some local apple juice.
Stir my onions.
Wonder if other twenty five year olds stand and stir onions for hours on a Saturday.
Text my mother and ask her the definition of a cat lady.
11:30 am: Start rolling out my pizza dough.
11:40 am: Gently place my dough in my new tart pan and prick with a fork. Layer pesto, tomato sauce, onions, olives and sundried tomatoes over the top.
Preheat the oven to 450 and bake for fifteen minutes.
12:00 pm: Gently take pizza-tart out of the oven and do a mini happy dance.
12:06 pm: Take a bite and am instantly transported back to the South of France on a hot summer day. Marvel at the deliciousness of the sweet onions, salty olives and flavorful pesto.
Realize that it’s even vegan (almost)!
12:15 pm: Take another mini-bite then wrap up the rest of the pizza-tart in foil to have for dinner. Pretend I’m in France and take a sip of red wine. Realize my neighbors probably think I’m very, very strange.
Make plans to go on a hike later.
Write out recipe and call it a success.
Pissaladiere (Provincial Onion Tart)
1/2 recipe Eat Live Run pizza dough
2 T pesto (store bought or homemade)
2 T tomato sauce or paste
5 white onions
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp oregano
1/4 cup water
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/3 cup sliced black olives
1/4 cup sliced sundried tomatoes
pinch red pepper flakes
Slice onions very thin and toss them in your largest pot along with the water, oregano, salt and pepper. Turn heat on medium low, stir and cover. Let cook for a little over an hour, stirring occasionally.They will get very, very soft and translucent.
Roll out pizza dough very thin. Place in greased long rectangular tart pan and prick the bottom with a fork. Brush with pesto and tomato sauce and then add a thick layer of cooked onions (you might not need all the onions). Sprinkle the sliced olives and sundried tomatoes on top and finish with a sprinkle of red pepper flakes.
Bake at 450 for about fifteen minutes, or until the bottom of the pizza is done. Remove and let cool then pop out of tart pan and trim sides.
Serve with a glass of red wine and pretend you’re in Nice.