Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Make Ahead Mid-Week Meal, Caramelised Onion Tart

Caramelised Onion Tart is the perfect make-ahead meal.  It  keeps well in the fridge for two or three days and can be frozen and thawed and re-heated when needed. 
Caramelised Onion Tart is a great recipe for vegetarians as well as meat eaters.  It can be served hot, at room temperature (my favourite) or cold and therefore is easily transportable.  It’s one of my life-saving recipes when company is expected. It also makes a good dish for a street party, a fete or buffet.

Caramelised Onion Tart is easy to make, particularly if you use ready-made and rolled out pastry. In France, you can buy pastry rounds which, with a little trimming, just fit into a flan tin. In England you can buy ready made pastry in oblongs, which, with a little fiddling, will also fit into a flan tin. I have made this tart with homemade pastry as well, but it’s only worth the trouble is you have a lot of time and you make excellent pastry. Mine is variable!

What you need:
Ready-made pastry.
2 large onions or 3 medium sized ones.
2 tablespoons of oil and about an ounce (a knob) of butter. (The oil keeps the butter from burning.)
3 large eggs
¾ pint of liquid (I use about a cup of crème fraiche or cream and the rest milk to make it richer.)
1 dash of nutmeg (optional).
1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon pepper.
About a cup of grated Emmenthal cheese.  (You can substitute any mild cheese, but Emmenthal compliments the sweetness of the onions.).

Lightly grease the flan tin and lay the pastry in it. 
Prick the pastry with a fork and brush lightly with egg.
Allow the pastry to hang over the sides and trim off excess later.
Blind bake at 200 C or 400 F for 10 minutes.
Remove from oven.
Turn the oven down to 180 C or 350 F.
Meanwhile, in a frying pan, sauté the onions in the oil and butter over low heat until they are brown and caramelized but not burnt.  (This will take about 25 minutes.).
In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and seasoning.
Add the milk and cream mixture.
Spread the onions in the pastry case.
Sprinkle the grated cheese over the onions.
Now carefully pour the egg and cream mixture over the top. 
Take care to keep it in the pastry case!
Put the tart in the oven and bake for about 25 minutes until the creamy mixture is set. 
Cool to room temperature and serve.

Carefully fit pastry to tin and prick the base.

Blind Bake for 10 minutes. Mine cracked at little, 

but I was able to stick it together while it was still warm.

Salute the onions in butter and oil until brown and caramelised.

Beat the eggs, then add milk and cream and seasoning.

Layer the onions, egg mixture, and cheese in the pastry base.

Remove from oven when the egg mixture is set and the top is golden.