Onion tart
(La pissaladière) - La pissaladiera

3/4 hour
Cooking time : 1/2 hr

Ingredients for 4 people :

250 grams of flour
1 kilo of onions
olive oil
thyme, rosemary, pissalat

If you are pressed for time, buy your bread dough or pastry ready made, but the home-made version which resembles that of ravioli is more crunchy, tasty and original.
To prepare it mix the flour, 14 soup-spoons of oil and some salt, with a little warm water (3 to 6 soup spoons according to the type of flour). Knead the dough VERY THROUGHLY until it is firm and smooth. Allow it to rest at least half an hour wrapped in a tea towel so that it will start to rise.
Whichever dough you have chosen to use, the following remains valid :
In a thick-bottomed saucepan on a low heat, pour the olive oil and simmer the onions cut thinly into half-rings, add the thyme, the rosemary, a clove, some pepper and a very small amount of salt.
Before they start to go brown add two glasses of warm water and leave on the heat for about half an hour. When the water has become entirely absorbed and the oil starts to sizzle the onions are ready.
Turn off the heat and mix in two knobs of pissalat, after having removed the thyme, the rosemary and the clove.
The pastry should be rolled and spread out into a pastry dish, reaching slightly above the edge. Distribute the onions over it in an even layer twice the thickness of the pastry. Then turn the edge of the pastry over and make a double layer about one cm thick by sqeezing between the forefinger and thumb.
Decorate with black olives and place in a hot oven for about 35 minutes. Your pissaladière is cooked to perfection when the pastry becomes white and the onions on the top start to become coloured. Add a little pepper on taking it out of the oven and eat it warm or cold with a good salad and a glass of cool red wine.

Of course, each family has its own know-how and its own secrets which are passed from father to daughter or mother to son as is the tradition. Here are three delicious variations :
1) Mix with the cooked onions a beaten egg with two soup-spoons of milk and a little cinnamon.
2) OR, mix into the onions 25 stoned black olives
3) OR, when placing the dish in the oven, add some small slivers of poached cod or mullet.


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