I was on a biking trip in Tuscany in October a few years ago, the time of year in Italy when the vineyards are heavy with fruit and the grape harvest is in full swing. A flatbread with grapes and rosemary from the garden, with a good lashing of extra virgin olive oil, was served to my cycling group at many a castello and agri-tourismo when we stopped for lunch – and I couldn’t resist recreating it back home.
Schiacciatta is a flatbread in Italian and uva means grape. Think of it as a white pizza with grapes.
What’s cool about this flatbread? Traditionally, the schiacciata al uva is served only once a year – usually in October – in celebration of the abundant grape harvest, and it’s the little “nonna’s” or house-cook’s way to show gratitude for the vineyard workers who toil relentlessly in the grapevines, crush pads and barrel rooms this time of year. Winemaking is hard work, and this is the good country cook’s way of saying “Thank You” to the winery workers and the vineyard proprietor.
I serve this flatbread with grapes here in wine country to my guests visiting California wine country. Think of it as a little bit of Tuscany here in the US.
Roll out a flatbread or pizza dough, and lay into a parchment paper-lined sheetpan, pushing it into the corners to make a rectangular shape.
Wash, pick and slice a variety of seedless California grapes and spread them evenly over the surface of the flatbread, pushing them down into the dough as you go. Pick and chop a handful of rosemary leaves and sprinkle them over the grapes. Season with a good sprinkling of sugar, then a good lashing of your finest extra virgin olive oil.
Bake in a hot over (450 degrees) about 10 minutes, till the edges start to brown and the grapes and oil and bubbling nicely. Let cool slightly, then cut into bite-size squares and serve immediately on a pretty platter. White pizza with grapes. So good!