This quintessential Sardinian comfort food, pane frattàu, is made with thin, crisp Sardinian flat bread called pane carasau, which is available at specialty food shops and Italian markets. The bread is moistened and then layered with tomato sauce to create a lasagna-like dish that 's topped with fried eggs—perfect for a late-night supper. If you can't find pane carasau, use very thin lavash and oak it briefly in the stock.
Great Comfort Food Recipes
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for frying the eggs
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
One 28-ounce can plus one 14-ounce can Italian plum tomatoes, drained and chopped, liquid reserved
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon sugar (optional)
Pinch of crushed red pepper
1/3 cup slivered fresh basil
One 1/2-pound package pane carasau
2 cups meat, chicken or vegetable stock or canned broth
About 1 1/2 cups freshly grated aged Pecorino or Parmesan cheese
How to Make It
Heat the 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a large saucepan. Add the onion and cook over moderately low heat until softened and golden, about 15 minutes. Add the tomatoes and cook over moderate heat, stirring frequently, until the sauce thickens, about 35 minutes; if the sauce begins to stick to the pan, stir in some of the reserved tomato liquid. Season the sauce with salt and pepper; if it is tangy, stir in the sugar. Add the crushed red pepper and the basil and remove from the heat.
Preheat the oven to 200°. You will need 12 pieces of the pane carasau, either the packaged triangles or 7-inch squares. Heat the stock in a medium skillet. Warm 4 dinner plates in the oven.
Using tongs, dip a piece of the pane carasau in the hot stock, turning it once, until it begins to soften. Transfer to a warm plate. Spread a layer of tomato sauce over the bread and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of the grated cheese. Repeat this layering 2 more times. Assemble the remaining 3 stacks on the warmed plates in the same way and keep warm in the oven.
Heat a thin film of olive oil in a large nonstick skillet. Crack in as many of the eggs as will fit comfortably and fry, over easy or sunny-side up; repeat with the remaining eggs. Set 2 fried eggs on each stack and sprinkle with grated cheese. Serve the pane frattàu immediately, passing more cheese at the table.
The tomato sauce can be refrigerated for up to 5 days.
Eggs are notoriously difficult to match with wine, but the red pepper in this dish suggests a wine with good acidity and some spiciness of its own. Consider a fresh Sauvignon Blanc, a soft, light red, such as Valpolicella.
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