Pissaladiere is a pizza-like dish of the South of France. Its name comes from the word pissalat (“salted fish”). It has a lot of onions, and no tomatoes or cheese.
I read about this in the Rowley Leigh cookery column of the Financial Times, where he presented a recipe with sardines instead of the traditional anchovies. I took it and gave it a twist, so that it has smoked herring, which I like very much.
The dough is very simple: 300 gr flour, 2 tablespoons of yeast, warm water, 1 tablespoon of salt, one large egg. Mix until you get a firm enough dough that you can spread over a deep baking tray. Leigh recommends also 150 grams of butter. I did not put it in, as it would make it very heavy for my summer taste.
Slice the onions, 6 large ones is the minimum, and put them in a large saucepan with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Let them stew for at least half an hour, and let it chill for another half.
Once the dough is evenly spread in the baking tray, spread the onions on top of it.
Now is the time to add all the toppings on top of the onion base.
The first to go is sliced chilli peppers and black olives. The next is thinly sliced basilico, dill, and parsley. Finally, I add the herring in stripes and add the final ingredient, fresh oregano.
The key here is not to add any cheese or tomato.
Bake in the oven (230 Centigrade) for 20 minutes and serve with a full-bodied white (like a Sicilian Chardonnay).
The dish is wonderful! IT has a kick from the peppers, it is sweet because of the onions, it has the savory bitterness of the olives, supplemented by the aromatic greens added on top, and the queen of the dish, the herring comes out of the bouquet of flavors on top.