This is the ubiquitous olive-and-anchovy tart from the Côte d’Azur. Nothing beats its full-flavored saltiness as an hors-d’oeuvre served with a glass of crisp white wine or a dry rosé. If you use salt-packed anchovies, soak them in a few changes of water to rid them of their excess salt. Originally published April 18, 2003.–Gordon Hamersley
Dump the flour in a large bowl. In a small bowl, combine 1 cup of warm water with the yeast and sugar. Let the yeast proof for about 8 minutes then add the 2 tablespoons of olive oil and stir to combine.
Pour the yeast mixture over the flour, stirring well to combine. When the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl, turn it out onto a floured surface and knead the dough until it’s smooth and elastic, about 5 to 7 minutes.
Put the dough back into a clean large bowl and drizzle with the 1/2 teaspoon olive oil and turn the dough to coat. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rise in a warm spot until about doubled in size, about 1 hour. Another way to tell if it’s properly risen: When you poke it with the tip of your finger the dough will not spring back.
Make the topping
While the dough rises, heat a couple of teaspoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and pepper and cook, stirring every few minutes, until tender, 7 to 9 minutes. Lower the heat to medium-low and let the onions cook until they become golden brown and very soft, another 30 to 40 minutes. Be mindful and watch the pan, as the onions can easily burn. Add the garlic, stir to combine, and cook an additional 2 minutes. Let the mixture cool.
Assemble and bake the pissaladiere
Crank the oven up to 425°F (220°C). Oil a 10-by-15-inch rimmed baking sheet with about 2 teaspoons olive oil.
Punch down the dough and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Using a rolling pan, roll out the dough into a rough rectangle measuring about 12 by 18 inches. Fit the dough into the baking sheet, letting the ends of the dough ride up onto the sides of the baking sheet.
Spread 2 to 3 teaspoons of the olive oil all over the dough, including the edges. Cover the dough again with plastic wrap and let it relax for about 5 minutes.
Spread the top of the dough with a thin layer of anchovy paste. Spread the onions over the anchovy paste in one layer. Scatter the olives over the top and lay the anchovy pieces — as many as you want — on top of the tart intermittently.
Bake until the crust is browned and crisp, 15 to 20 minutes.