Vegetarian coca

Vegetarian coca

By
From
Catalonia
Serves
6
Photographer
Laura Edwards

You can find cocas of all kinds – sweet, savoury, very simple, very complicated – and all of them are great in my opinion. They are a sort of tongue-shaped ‘pizza’.

This recipe is perfect if you fancy something vegetarian, but feel free to include some anchovies, which is one of my favourite additions. You could just change the toppings as you please, but do try to stick to some Catalonian flavours.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
12g fresh yeast
or 7g sachet fast-action dried yeast
330ml lukewarm water
pinch sugar
500g plain flour, plus extra to dust
10g fine sea salt
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
fine polenta, to dust

for the topping

Quantity Ingredient
1 small, firm pumpkin, cut into small wedges
2 red onions, cut into wedges
olive oil
sea salt
few sprigs thyme
150g chestnuts

Method

  1. Cream the yeast in a bowl with a little of the water and a pinch of sugar. When smooth, add three-quarters of the remaining water and leave to stand, covered, for 30 minutes until the mixture starts to bubble.
  2. Sift the flour and salt into the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the yeast water and olive oil and knead with the dough hook for 5 minutes on a low speed, adding more of the water if it looks a little dry. Leave to stand for 10 minutes then knead again for 5 minutes until smooth and elastic. Cover and stand for 1 hour or until doubled in size.
  3. Meanwhile, heat the oven to 200°C. Put the pumpkin and onions into a roasting tin, drizzle with oil and season with salt and the sage leaves. Roast for 30 minutes until starting to become golden and tender. Remove from the oven.
  4. Divide the dough into six equal portions, then roll out on a lightly floured surface into 30 cm tongue-like shapes. Sprinkle two baking trays with a little polenta, place the dough pieces on top, cover with a clean tea towel and stand in a warm place for 15 minutes.
  5. Heat the oven as high as it will go. Brush the dough bases lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt. Toss the chestnuts with the pumpkin and onions and divide between the breads, leaving a 2 cm border around the edge. Bake for 10–12 minutes, or until the bases are golden and crisp. Serve immediately.
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