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Pissaladiere (Mediterranean Tart)
From: Mrs B

The best way to describe Pissaladiere is ‘ratatouille’ in a pie crust. It’s a French Mediterranean classic. Ideally, put the base and filling together just when serving sot that the base remains crisp.

SERVES 6

PASTRY

  • 2 cups plain flour (8 oz)
  • 4 ounces sunflower margarine
  • 1 tablespoon mixed herbs (dried)
  • 1 pinch salt

FILLING

  • 2 large onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • grated nutmeg, to taste
  • 1 (14 ounce) can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • thyme leaves (from a small sprig)
  • salt & fresh ground pepper
  • 2/3 cup stoned black olives, sliced (3 oz)
  • 2 tablespoons capers
  • fresh parsley, chopped, to garnish

Pre-heat the oven to 375F, 190 C, gas mark 5.

Rub the flour and margarine together until it forms fine crumbs, then mix in the dried mixed herbs and salt; mix to a firm dough with a small amount of cold water (you can make the pastry in your food processor).

Roll out the pastry and line a 9 inch flan dish; bake the crust blind for approximately 15-20 minutes, removing the baking beans and paper for the last 5 minutes of coking to allow the pastry to crisp up; when cooked, set aside to cool in the flan dish.

Meanwhile gently fry the onions and garlic in the oil for about 10 minutes until soft and transparent; stir in the nutmeg, tomatoes, sugar, thyme and seasoning and simmer gently for 10 minutes until the mixture is reduced and slightly syrupy.

Remove from the heat and allow to cool; mix in the olives and capers.

When ready to serve, spoon the filling into the flan case, sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley and serve at room temperature.