Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Recipe: Alsatian Flamische

In Alsace Lorraine they make a pizza-like tart that I tried this past weekend to rave reviews. Having read in a French cookbook that it can be done with pizza dough if made on a pizza stone, I took Route 44 in the direction of Pleasant Valley and bought a pizza stone at Dutchess Restaurant Supply and a bag of fresh pizza dough and a slab of smoked bacon at Adams. The ceramic pizza stone evenly distributes the oven heat, while the porous nature of the stone helps absorb moisture—resulting in a crispy crust, much like one baked in a professional pizza oven. We made them small and served them with wine before a light dinner. Of course, one could make them larger and serve as the main course, but the cooking time would probably be a bit longer.  This is the recipe for the traditional Alsatian Flamische, but the variations of toppings for these "mini pizzas" are endless, including the famous Italian version with tomato sauce and mozzarella. 

(for 12 mini-tarts)
1 pizza dough
1 pound smoked slab bacon (Schaller & Weber)
1 cup crème fraȋche
3 small white onions, sliced very thin

Heat oven to 500° F. Place the pizza stone inside and allow it to heat for 25- to 30 minutes while you prepare the tarts. To prepare the bacon, trim off and discard the hard edges and excess fat and slice into thin pieces roughly a half-inch long (lardons). Roll out the pizza dough as thin as you can. Cut in half and roll out again. Cut in half yet again and roll out each of the four pieces again. Take a cookie cutter or wide glass or bowl and cut three rounds in each of the pizza-dough quarters (or cut each into three triangle shapes looking like pizza slices). Place a teaspoon of crème fraȋche at the center of each mini-pizza. Spread the cream out, but not to the edges. Add on some onion slices first, and then some lardons. Place the mini-pizzas on the hot stone in the oven. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove each one with the aid of a spatula. Serve immediately.

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