Essen, Trinken, Treffen—Eat, Drink, Meet, I translated the the words on the window of a soon-to-open restaurant. So it’s going to be a German restaurant, I thought. This is either going to be a hit or a miss. A year after first discovering the restaurant, I can tell you that Leopold’s has been a hit.
With just the right balance of kitsch and culture, Leopold’s has become a hip spot to sample German beers or chow down on Alpine comfort food. Waiting more than an hour for a seat is not unusual, so pop in as soon as the doors open for dinner at 5:30 pm or do what Emily does and have a drink at Tonic across the street while you wait.
These days, you’ll find me eating the goulash as my entrée and the flatbread as my appetizer. Since I’m not always up for braving the wait at Leopold’s, I created my own version of their flatbread so I can enjoy it at home. With it’s crisp crust, melty cheese, salty prosciutto, peppery arugula and sweet caramelized onion, this flatbread is pretty hard to resist.
But wait…there’s more!
Oftentimes when I’m choosing which photos to put on my blog, I get a case of Lead Finger Syndrome and scroll through the photos really quickly, which makes the photos look like a stop motion video. I get a kick out of it every time, and I thought it would be fun to create a stop motion cooking video. So here you have it—not only my first stop motion video, but the first video I’ve ever created for Tomato Tango.
And in the spirit of the upcoming Academy Awards, I’d like to thank iMovie for enabling me to actualize my dream of creating a video; my tripod for being as solid as a rock click after click; and the plastic baggie that shielded my camera from what could have been a sticky situation. I couldn’t have done it without any of you.
Makes two 14-inch flatbreads. Serves eight as an appetizer or 4 as a light main course.
Recipe Source: Dough and caramelized onions adapted from Cook’s Illustrated’s Pissaldiere recipe.
2 cups (11 oz.) all purpose flour
1 teaspoon instant yeast
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon olive oil, plus additional for brushing on the dough
1 cup (8 oz.) warm water (about 110°F)
For Caramelized Onions:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound yellow onions, sliced
¼ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon brown sugar
2 teaspoons water
freshly ground black pepper
1 cup shredded Gruyere cheese
4 slices prosciutto, sliced into ½-inch strips
1/2 cup packed arugula leaves (or 2 generous handfuls)
Make the Dough
Combine the flour, yeast and salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse to combine. With the motor running, gradually add the olive oil and water and process until the dough forms a ball around the processor blade, about 15 seconds. (If you don’t have a food processor, stir together the flour, yeast and salt in a medium bowl. Make a well in the center and pour in 1 tablespoon olive oil and the warm water. Stir until wet and dry ingredients are well incorporated, using your hands if the dough is difficult to handle with a spoon.)
Dust a clean work surface with flour, turn dough out onto surface and knead lightly to form a smooth ball. (Knead the dough a few minutes longer if you did not use a food processor to make the dough.) The dough will be slightly tacky. Place dough in a lightly-oiled medium bowl and allow to rise in a warm spot until doubled in volume, 1 to 1½ hours.
Make the Caramelized Onions
Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. When oil is hot, add the onions, salt and brown sugar. Stirring frequently, cook the onions for about 10 minutes or just until they are beginning to brown. Reduce the heat to low. Continue cooking and stirring onions until golden brown and caramelized, about 20 minutes longer. Remove from heat and stir in the water. This will make more caramelized onions than you need for the flatbreads, so save the extras for salads, sandwiches or whatever else you like.
Assemble and Bake the Flatbreads
Preheat oven to 500°F. With floured hands, divide the dough into two pieces and shape each piece into a ball. Brush each ball with olive oil and let rest for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, cover two baking sheets with parchment paper.
With well-oiled hands, shape one piece of dough into a 14 x 8 inch oval, using fingertips to dimple and stretch the dough into the proper shape. Top the dough with several grinds of pepper and half of the caramelized onions and Gruyere. Bake the flatbread for 10 minutes, remove from baking sheet and place directly on rack for 3 more minutes or until bottom is well-browned. While the first flatbread is baking, shape and top the second flatbread.
After removing the flatbread from the oven, top with half of the arugula and strips of prosciutto. Slice into pieces and serve.