Tarte a l’oignon is a family favorite which I was introduced to on my arrival to Haïti. It’s origins are French and it’s the type of dish that appears on Sunday Lunch tables or brunches. It is a delicious concoction of sautéed onions, a creamy filling which binds the soft caramelized onions and the buttery crust which pulls it all together. This is an open face tart which looks much like a quiche, but unlike a quiche which uses an eggy custard as the main component, the cream and egg ratio in this recipe make a more delicate unctuous filling which allows the main ingredient to shine.
Some people may hear onion tart and think that this tart will have a sharp raw onion flavor. Totally wrong!! The onions are tender, sweet and mellow and make the filling truly delicious. There are several versions to this tart of which I myself have a few. I also do an onion tart with bacon which is delicious as well, but I like this one when there are vegetarians coming over; this way, no one is left out.
You can have this tarte à l’oignon alone as a snack or add a green salad and it’s the perfect brunch or lunch It’s also a great addition to a meal if you prefer to serve it as a side along with a roast chicken, turkey or baked ham.
Tarte à l’oignon
1 lb yellow onions, sliced thin
1 ½ tbsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove crushed and finely chopped
½ tsp Worcestershire sauce
⅛ tsp thyme, crushed
1 tsp sugar
2 egg yolks
½ cup heavy cream
¼ cup milk
¼ cup Parmesan cheese
½ cup Gruyere cheese
Grating of fresh nutmeg
Salt and pepper to taste
Pie crust for a 9 ½ “ pie * recipe on a separate post
In a large sauté pan, place butter and oil on medium heat.
Add crushed garlic and sauté quickly.add the onions and stir together well.
Sprinkle sugar over. This will help to caramelize the onions. Add the Worcestershire sauce and thyme and stir together.
On medium low heat slowly cook the onions until golden, soft and tender. This will take about 15 minutes. Stir occasionally so that mixture does not burn.
In a bowl add the 2 egg yolks and beat well. Pour the heavy cream, and milk. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Pour the caramelized onions into the egg and cream mixture and combine.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees and bake Roll out the pastry and fill the tart pan. Place a piece of parchment paper over the base and place pie weights all over. If you have no pie weights, you can use uncooked rice or dried beans as weights. This stops the pastry from bubbling up.
Bake the tart crust for 20 minutes.
Remove pie weights and parchment paper.
Sprinkle grated Gruyere cheese on the base.
Pour over onion filling and distribute evenly in the base.
The creamy onion filling with the partially baked crust. NB: Cheese is sprinkled on the base before the filling is added.
Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over the top and place in the oven.
Bake for about 30 minutes or until tart is set.
The filled tart ready to be baked for another 20 minutes.
Tarte à l’oignon. May be eaten warm or at room temperature.
*Note that the pastry dough recipe is in a separate post.