Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Coca de Recapte

Part of my obsession with Catalan extends into Catalan cuisine, hence I decided to try out a simple recipe for flatbread with eggplant, peppers, and tomatoes from a cookbook Christopher got me. The recipe is as follows:


1 red bell pepper
1 green bell pepper
1 eggplant

1 2/3 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tbsp olive oil
1 egg yolk
3/4 cup water

1 clove crushed garlic
12 black olives, pitted and coarsely chopped
salt and freshly ground pepper
2 large, ripe tomatoes cut into thin slices
4 tbsp olive oil

1. Preheat the oven to 450. Roast the peppers and eggplant on a baking sheet and roast, turning several times to cook evenly, until the peppers are blistered and blackened all over and the skin of the eggplant is wrinkled and shriveled, about 45 minutes. Transfer the peppers and eggplant ot a paper bag; close the bag and set aside until cool enough to handle, about 15 minutes. Leave the oven on.

2. When cool enough to handle, peel off the charred skins fo the vegetables. Slice each bell pepper in half lengthwise and discard the seeds, ribs, and stems. Cut the peppers and eggplant into thin strips.

3. Make the coca dough. Sift the four, salt, and baking powder into a bowl. Make a well in the flour and add the olive oil and egg yolk. Gradually add the water, mixing the wet ingredients into the flour little by little with a wooen spoon. Knead the dough on al ightoy sloured board until soft, smooth, and elastic; about 1 minute. Form the dough into a ball and place in a large, lightly oiled bowl. Cover wiht a kitchen towel and leave in a warm place until the odugh puffs slightly, about 30 minutes.

4. In another bowl, combine the eggplant and bell eppper strips with the garlic and olives and season generously with salt and pepper.

5. Lightly oil a 12x9 inch rimmed baking sheet. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the dough into a rectangle to fit the pan. Press into the prepared pan and trim away any excess dough.

6. Cover the dough base with the tomato slices. Drizzle 2 tbsp of the olive oil over the tomato slices. Arrange the eggplant mixture evenly over the tomatoes, and drizzle with the remaining oil.

7. Bake the coca (the flatbread) until the edges are beginnign to brown, about 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly. Cut into slices and serve warm.

My problem with this recipe pretty much only had to do with the dough, which I somehow screwed up. I could have probably just added more flour, but I was convinced it would all come out in the end. Had I been able to roll out the dough and get a nice thin layer I think the bread would have been nice and crispy like it is supposed to. Nonetheless, the bread was enjoyable.

1 comment:

  1. I just made this for dinner. I think the recipe you used is the same I have (from Williams-Sonoma, perhaps?). Don't be afraid to work plenty of flour into the bread. It's very sticky when you first mix it up. During the kneading phase, you'll probably work another half cup of flour into it. Mine didn't "puff" a great deal, but the end result was sublime. I want to eat like this every day of my life! And just in time to use up the bounty of beautiful eggplant coming in. Try this recipe with the white and purple streaked eggplants!