Recipe from MoVida Rustica by Frank Camorra, Richard Cornish (Murdoch Books, 2009)Coca de recapte
For generations, the housewives of Catalonia had a love-hate relationship with the cuina econòmica - a charcoal-burning beast on which they cooked their meals and heated their water and in which they baked their cocas. Cocas are leavened flatbreads that are cooked in a hot oven. Yes, they are similar to pizza, but never tell a Catalan that her coca is a pizza! Topped with whatever was in season, savory or sweet, the cocas soaked up the high heat of an oven with a freshly made fire. After the fire went down, the rest of the dough went in to make the daily bread. This is a summer version of coca, so please feel free to incorporate your own topping of cooked seasonal vegetables.
Put the yeast in a bowl, add 1 1/3 cups lukewarm water and stir until the yeast has dissolved. Add the sugar, the 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil and the sea salt and whisk together. Cover and let stand in a warm place for 30 minutes, or until bubbles start to appear.
- 1/4 oz fresh yeast, or 2 teaspoons dried yeast
- 1/2 teaspoon superfine sugar
- 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil, plus 2 tablespoons
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt, plus extra, to sprinkle
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup olive oil, plus extra, for brushing
- 1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced
- 3 bay leaves
- 2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
- 1 large red bell pepper, seeded and ribs removed, very thinly sliced
- 1 large green bell pepper, seeded and ribs removed, very thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon coarse polenta
- 2 zucchini, very finely sliced about 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
- 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
Add the flour and stir to combine. Place in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook and knead on low speed for 12 minutes. Allow to rest for 5 minutes, then knead again for 5 minutes, or until smooth and elastic. Cover and let stand in a warm place for another 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat the 1/3 cup olive oil in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and bay leaves and sauté for 5 minutes, or until slightly golden. Add the garlic and bell peppers, then cover and cook for 20 minutes, or until the peppers are soft, stirring regularly. Remove from the heat.
Preheat the oven to 425ºF.
Divide the dough into six equal portions, then roll out on a lightly floured surface into 12-inch tongue-like shapes. Sprinkle two well-oiled baking sheets with the polenta, place the dough pieces on top, cover with a clean cloth and let stand in a warm place for 15 minutes.
Toss the zucchini in a bowl with a little salt and the 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil.
Brush the pizza bases lightly with olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt and divide the onion and pepper mixture among the bases, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Scatter the tomatoes, zucchini and parsley over the top, drizzle with a little more oil and season to taste. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until the bases are golden and crisp. Serve immediately.