This tart recipe comes from the late Noel Richardson, one of my favourite food writers. Noel and her husband owned the lovely Ravenhill Farm in Saanich, B.C. until her passing a number of years and thankfully has been stewarded by new owners. The caramelized onions are so delicious. If you don’t want to make your own crust, feel free to use a purchased unbaked one. However, if you have a food processor, it takes only a few minutes, taking less time than shopping for one! The filling makes great appetizers too. Simply buy mini tart shells, bake them (no need for pie weights) and proceed with filling.
Makes 6 Servings (a 9” tart)
1 1/3 cups unbleached flour
4 oz. cold butter, cut into 8 pieces
1 tsp. salt
¼ cup or more, ice water
Combine flour and salt in processor with a few on/off turns. Add the butter and process, using on/off turns until the mixture is the consistency of coarse meal. With the machine running add water in a stream and process until the dough begins to clump together. If it seems dry add a bit more water, a tablespoon at a time, until it forms moist but not wet, clumps. Remove the dough from the processor onto clean surface and bring together into a ball. Wrap with plastic wrap, flatten to a disk then chill in the fridge for 1 hour before using. Or make the day before and let the dough warm up a bit until you are able to roll it out.
Preheat the oven to 400 F.
Roll out the dough to an 11” round. Fit into a 9” glass pie plate that has been sprinkled with a tiny bit of flour. Crimp the edges decoratively, prick the crust all over with the tines of a fork. Fit a piece of tin foil into the pie plate and fill with pie weights (or like me, you can use dried white beans that can be saved for this use). Bake in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven, remove the foil and pie weights. Set crust aside. (You can use a metal, fluted tart pan with a removable bottom, if you wish).
2Tbsp. unsalted butter
2 large onions, sliced thin
1 tsp. fresh thyme
Salt & freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbsp. sugar
¼ cup dry red wine
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
2 Tbsp. dry sherry
In a large skillet, heat butter until it turns light brown. Add the onions, thyme, salt and pepper; cover the skillet and cook over medium heat for approximately 5 minutes. Remove the lid, sprinkle sugar over the onions, heating until the onions caramelize slightly. Reduce the heat to medium low, add wine, wine vinegar and sherry, let simmer until liquid becomes syrupy, stirring often to avoid sticking and burning. Add salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat, set aside.
Make The Custard and Fill The Tart:
4 oz. grated Gruyere cheese
1 tsp. chopped fresh rosemary
4 large eggs, beaten
1 cup creamo (or ½ cup homo milk & ½ cup whipping cream)
¼ tsp. salt or more to taste
1/8 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
Pinch of ground nutmeg
Preheat the oven to 350F.
In a medium bowl whisk the eggs to blend. Whisk in the creamo, nutmeg, salt, pepper to taste. Spread the onion jam on the bottom of the tart shell, top with the Gruyere cheese and rosemary. Pour the custard over and place in the preheated oven. Bake for about 45 minutes or until a knife inserted in the middle of the tart comes out clean. Let tart rest for 15 – 20 minutes before cutting.