Vegetariano Flatbread

This flatbread hosts an incredible meld of flavors. But this recipe isn’t one that is completely original. I first dined on a similar flatbread at one of my favorite tapas restaurants, Mojito Tapas. This restaurant is a top choice of mine and is a must-stop anytime I’m visiting Louisville. It was here that I first discovered a love of tapas and the spanish flavors that infused the food. It has become commonplace for birthday dinners and Christmas celebrations in our family. When ordering we are usually are torn between ordering the vegetariano flatbread and the duck confit flatbread. For this menu, I knew that I wanted a few courses that featured minimal proteins or non-red meat options, so I opted to create the vegetariano one this time.  Using a variety of cheeses, roasted red pepper, olive tapenade, and an herb salad, it combines peppery bites needed and remains hearty enough that you don’t miss the meat in this round. Keep reading for the full recipe!

Ingredients:

For the catalan flatbread:

  • 2 tsp. dried yeast
  • 1/2 t superfine sugar
  • 2 t extra virgin olive oil + 2 T extra
  • 1/2 t fine sea salt
  • 4 C all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 C olive oil

For the sofrito sauce:

  • 2 T olive oil
  • 12 scallions (green onions, white and green part only)
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 lg tomato, cored and chopped
  • 1/2 C chopped cilantro leaves
  • salt and fresh ground black pepper

For the olive tapenade:

  • 1 medium garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for garnish
  • 1 small shallot, minced
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons juice from one lemon

For flatbread toppings:

    • 4 oz goat cheese
    • 3 C shredded mozzarella cheese
    • 2 red bell peppers, roasted, deskinned and cut into strips
    • 3 C arugula
    • 2 T extra virgin olive oil
    • Juice of one lemon
    • 3 T parsley, minced
    • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Let’s begin with the flatbread dough. This will take around an hour and a half total cooking time. Put yeast in a bowl. Add 1 1/3 C lukewarm water and stir until yeast has dissolved. Add sugar, olive oil, and seas salt and whisk together. Cover and leave to stand in a warm place for 30 minutes, or until bubbles start to appear. 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 in pull. Cover and let stand in a warm place for another 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Spread dough in an even layer across a cookie sheet. Dimple dough with fingers. Blind bake for 10 minutes.

When you have downtime in your dough proofing process, make the sofrito sauce and olive tapenade. Let’s begin with the sofrito sauce. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the scallions, onions, and tomato. Cook until onions are soft and golden and tomatoes have broken down, about 10 minutes, stirring often. Add cilantro, and salt and pepper. Stir and set to the side.

For the olive tapenade, process olives, garlic, olive oil, shallot, and lemon juice in a food processor until uniform paste forms, about 10 seconds, scraping down sides of the bowl once during processing. Set in a bowl to the side.

To assemble, spread the olive tapenade across the surface of the flatbread. Next, spoon sofrito sauce over the flatbread. Add mozzarella cheese and goat cheese crumbles. Place strips of roasted red pepper on top. Place in the oven and allow to bake for 15 minutes or until cheese is golden brown. While pizza is in the oven, make the herb salad to go on top. Combine the arugula, parsley, lemon, olive oil, salt and pepper. Toss well. Remove flatbread from oven and add the herbed salad to the top.

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