Taken from Psychologies Magazine (May 2019) and recipe published in Moorish: Vibrant recipes from the Mediterranean.
From the Aeolian Islands off the Sicilian coast, the dough for this bread is fried in olive oil for a few minutes before the toppings are added.
Serves : 6
For the Dough :
240ml lukewarm water
50ml red wine
1 tblsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tblsp runny honey
1 x 7g sachet dried yeast granules
425g strong white flour, sifted, plus extra for dusting
Grated zest of 1 unwaxed lemon
1/2 tsp fine salt
For the Filling :
1 fennel bulb, cored and finely sliced
75g sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, drained and roughly chopped
1 red onion, finely sliced
1 fresh red chilli, finely sliced
18 salted anchovies
100g pecorino or caciocavallo cheese, grated
1 tblsp fresh thyme leaves
Step One : First, make the bread dough. Put the water, wine, oil and honey in a large mixing bowl. Add the yeast and stir. Leave to activate and become foamy. Now, add a third of the flour, the lemon zest and salt, then whisk to a smooth batter. Mix in the remaining flour to form a manageable dough.
Step Two : Transfer the dough to a floured surface and knead for a few minutes. Shape into a ball, put in a bowl and cover with a cloth. Leave to rise in a warm spot for 45 minutes or until doubled in size.
Step Three : Cut the dough into six equal portions. Roll out each piece into a rough circle. Leave to rest for 15 minutes before cooking.
Step Four : Heat enough olive oil for shallow frying in a deep pan – to 170oC. In batches, carefully lower the breads into the hot oil, using a metal spatula, and fry for 5-6 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the pan, then drain on kitchen paper.
Step Five : To make the filling, heat a pan over a medium heat and add a glug of olive oil. Add the fennel and season, then cook for 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes, onion and chilli and cook for a further 3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl.
Step Six : Preheat the grill. Divide the fennel and tomato mix among the flatbreads, spreading it over the top, followed by the anchovies and the cheese. Place under the grill and cook for3 minutes or until the cheese is melted and golden brown. Sprinkle with thyme and serve.