A flammkuchen is basically a pizza without yeast or a Mongolian pancake with a topping. It makes a quirky and hearty dinner. The recipe comes from the Hairy Bikers’ Big Book of Baking. I added pear because I wanted to lighten it up a bit.
2 teaspoon sea salt
175 ml water
2 tablespoons olive oil
500g onions cut in half and thinly sliced
200ml crème fraîche
Place the flour in a large bowl and stir in the salt. Mix the water and half the olive oil together and pour them into the well. Immediately start stirring with a wooden spoon and then your hands to form a soft, spongy dough. Turn this out on to a floured surface and knead for 10 minutes until it’s smooth and elastic. Cover with a clean tea towel and leave to rest while you make the topping.
I like to cut my own lardons. I make them much bigger than the ones for sale in the supermarket. This enables them to get a firm crust on the outside while remaining soft and juicy inside.
Heat the remaining oil in a large non0stick frying pan and fry the bacon for 3-4 minutes until the fat begins to crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon, leaving as much oil and fat as possible in the pan, and set aside on a small plate covered with kitchen paper. Tip the sliced onions into the pan and cook over a low heat for about 15 minutes until well softened but not browned, stirring occasionally. Remove the onions from the heat and leave to cool slightly for a few minutes. The onions will brown when the flammkuchen is baking. Meanwhile, peel, core and slice the pear.
Preheat the oven to 240C. Line a large baking tray with baking parchment. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface into a rough circle or rectangle about 3mm thick. I made mine about 5mm thick and it turned out too thick and bread-like.
Lift the dough with the rolling pin and transfer it to the prepared tin. You can make several smaller flammkuchen if you prefer.
Spread the crème fraîche over the dough, leaving a 2cm border all the way around the edge. Scatter the onions and then the bacon and pear on top. Bake in the centre of the oven for 16-20 minutes or until the base is crisp and lightly browned around the edges and the topping is bubbling.
Serve like pizza.