An unabashed love of Burger King is something I will write off as a cultural difference between myself and mon mari. After shutting down shop in France in 1997, Burger King has become a storied myth, inspiring cross-country travels for the love of onions rings. Not too unlike my cross-continental odyssey to live happily ever after in the land of pain au chocolat. Although Burger King will open its doors again in France soon, after a glacially cold weekend of questionable croquette sandwiches and mystery meat vending machines in Amsterdam, mon mari indulged in a little BK. And I turned my cheek, dreaming of viennoiserie...
Summer is on its way out. Paris is entering its second week of the dreaded la rentrée, back to school and back to the grind. Here is one last lingering memory of my summer, breakfast for one at La Cigale in Nantes. Note the long-lost latte and the unparalleled crème caramel au sel de Guérande.
By the way, don’t forget to read how I’m surviving la rentreehere, my first collaboration with the delightful HiP Paris Blog.
Caught in a breakfast rut this morning, I would have made Gwyneth proud. I refueled with a bowl of miso soup. As all the neighborhood bakers are sunning themselves on the French Riv’ this time of year, those of us ‘left behind’ must fend for ourselves. Baguette is in demand. However miso soup was a welcome savory change first thing in the morning. I admit to loving the French breakfast. But it is a strict formula of coffee, toast, butter, and jam. A tartine, a grilled day-old baguette with a few leaves of butter and a generous smear of jam (quince being the flavor of the week) has easily replaced my matinal soft-poached egg on wheat.
So while we were sunning ourselves on the French Riv’ a few weeks ago, much to my surprise, pissaladière, a caramelized onion pizza studded with olives and draped with anchovies, was eaten alongside an espresso for breakfast. Pissaladière is not reserved just for the morning; it is a savory Niçoise snack at all hours. But hung up on my tartine regime, I instantly turned up my nose at the pairing of coffee and onions. But the sweetly caramelized onions and briny olives baked beautifully into the spongy dough, a long-lost savory sidekick to my café Américain.
Taste a mean pissaladière at Kiosque Tintin (3 Place Gén Charles De Gaulle 06100 Nice). Or save a trip to Nice and make it at home. So whether serving a slice as a light lunch with a green salad or sneaking a little the morning-after, it is highly recommendable over miso.
1 ball pizza or bread dough
2 pounds yellow onions, halved and cut into 1/4 inch slices
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 can best-quality anchovies
20 black olives
1/2 teaspoon thyme
salt and freshly-ground pepper to taste
1.) Preheat oven to 350°F/180°C.
2.) In a sauté pan over low heat, cook onions until soft and transparent, about 10 minutes. Add garlic, thyme, salt, and pepper. Cook 20 more minutes until golden and caramelized.
3.) On a floured surface, roll the dough until 1/4 inch thick. Place on a cookie sheet.
4.) Spread onion mixture evenly on dough, creating a 3/4 inch border all the way around. Layer anchovies and olives on top.
5.) Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the crust is crisp.