That sweet fish bread, heritage from our Roman ancestors (French Pissaladiere)

The first is the eternal pissaladiere.
It’s one of the oldest food tradition we have. It doesn’t look so pretty, maybe it doesn’t even taste good for foreign taste buds, but it’s acquired taste of more than 2000 year ago.
So millions of new dishes can be created beside, but I don’t want that recipe to be *improved”, like I don’t want the pyramids of Egypt to be renovated with high-tech glass panels replacing the stones. It came to us unchanged 2000 year, I wish that in 2000 years, it will still exist, unchanged, and people can do “culinary tourism”.

When the area became a Roman port, bread-making was introduced or developed. Fish sauce (something like nuoc nam, nam pla…) was omnipresent standard in Roman cuisine, they called it garum. On the Cote d’Azur, they already had anchovies stocked in brine. That was the “pissalat” (litt : salty fish). A pissaladiere is a “pissalat bread”.
Tomatoes where not known, but later in certain places they added them to the pissaladiere.
So you can have in Nice’s style “white” pissaladiere (the real one), and in Monaco’s style “red” pissaladiere.
I like both. I won’t decide…


Let the dough raise 30 minutes.

Pissalat
Anchovie in brine, drained, pasted.
If you are not in the area, it’s difficult to find anchovies in brine. Here, it’s impossible. In some stores, you can buy “anchovy sauce” that is pissalat. Otherwise, I think that anywhere :

Compote d’oignons
The onions are very sweet, because they are cooked longly into onion jam. No sugar is added. What I did is nearly a sabotage- I was starving- only 50 minutes of cooking in olive oil… the Provencal grannies slice very finely their onions and let them on the stove several hours, the day before. Ideally, start the onion when you start making the dough. 2 hours is well.

Then let the mix cool. Add the anchovies pasted (keep a few for display), and herbs, fresh or dry.

Nice… Monaco.

I bake it like bread not pizza. Pre-heated oven, at 220 Celsius, about 30~40 minutes.

With a little glass of “rose” ?

It’s more “amber”… it’s a Japanese wine actually. I didn’t remember I had it, and I was cleaning my closets and found it. I didn’t remember it was so “corse” (strong ? deep ?), but the pissaladiere is “corsee” too, so they got along well.

The whole :
Cal : 777 F20.3g C122.8g P24.7g

9 thoughts on “That sweet fish bread, heritage from our Roman ancestors (French Pissaladiere)

    • Most of the anchovies are pasted and melted in, the topping ones are optional. It’s like fish sauce in many Asian dish, you don’t detect it, but it enhance the rest.

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