First, let me clarify a few points. A Catalan Coca is not:
a cheap local version of Coca-Cola
a parrot species
a planet in the Youssou n’dour solar system
your long-lost grand aunt
I’m pretty confident with the statement above as i always do my homework before writing a post (..hmm..yea right!). So what the heck is a Catalan coca, then?.. Something really delicious of course. Look…
Coca is one of the most popular dish of Catalonia, if you never heard of it you’re certainly familiar with a few of its cousins – there’s pissaladiere in south of France, flammenkuche in Alsace and of course.. Italian pizzas everywhere. The Coca is a sort of oval flatbread pizza that comes with a variety of delicious toppings, although there’s usually no tomato. There are many different kinds of course, even sweet ones, but in my opinion this adaptation of a Jose Andres recipe found in Tapas: A Taste of Spain captures best the essence of this beautiful region. This is a trip to Barcelona in every bite my friends.
Anyway, who doesn’t like the sound of piquillo peppers, sweet vidalia onions, olives, Spanish olive oil, aged manchego cheese and anchovies on a flatbread pizza… Hmm?… What do you mean you can’t hear the sound?.. Come closer to your computer screen.. a little closer.. closer.. a little more.. See!? Ahh! No, no.. don’t thank me. It’s quite alright.
The panel of judges at work agreed without any argument. This is the real deal, they said after the first bite. In fact we thought it was so good we plan to serve it as one of the amuse-bouche for a large dinner party in the Hamptons at the end of August, but more on that in a few weeks…
I did notice quite a few anchovy haters out in the blogosphere which saddens me a lot, so as an attempt to convert them into anchovy lovers, i thought about sending some anchovy inspiration their way. Repeat the following lines a hundred times and get ready for some anchovy lovin’ baby…
Anchovies, anchovies you are so delicious!
You are my favorite, of all fishes!
I know, i know …this attempt at auto-suggestion is bound to fail miserably, if you still hate anchovies after this exercise make yourself known. I want names in the comment room. Names! I can already tell you there will be spank ..err.. sanctions.
[And thank you all for your participation in the Jammin' Giveaway. The winner will be picked on Tuesday.. Good luck everyone!]
- 2 packets (1/2 oz.) active dry yeast
- 1/2 c. whole milk, gently warmed
- 2 tablespoons spanish olive oil
- 1 cup plus 3 tbs. all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 2 tbs. olive oil
- 1 large sweet onion, thinly sliced
- 1 tbs. dried oregano
- 20 kalamata olives, pitted and roughly chopped
- 1 c. piquillo peppers (a little less than a 13 oz. jar), cut into long strips
- 16 oil-packed anchovy fillets, halved crosswise
- 6 oz. Manchego cheese, grated (about 1 c.)
- Stir the yeast and the olive oil into the warmed milk and let it rest for 5 minutes. Add the flour and salt to a food processor and pulse to combine. Pour the yeast mixture into the food processor and process for 1 minute, or until the dough is well-mixed. Remove the lid and cover the bowl of the food process with plastic wrap. Leave it in a non-drafty place to rise for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Add the olive oil to a large skillet, preferably cast iron or nonstick, and heat to medium-low. Add the onions and cook, stirring occasional for 15 to 20 minutes, or until caramelized–very soft and brown. Season with salt and pepper once they start to soften. If the skillet gets too dry before onions are done, add 1/2 tablespoon of water to prevent them from burning. Remove from heat and set aside.Coast two baking sheets with nonstick spray or line with parchment paper.