As promised in my previous post, here’s the recipe for the Tomato Onion Tart we I made to compliment the Winter Veggie Soup. The two dishes make for a filling vegetarian meal. This tart is pretty rich and it makes a great brunch or lunch meal too. I’m relatively new to savory tarts, but I am definitely going to be making more. Paired with a salad or soup, they are hefty enough for dinner and leftovers are great for lunches too.
I found this recipe on Epicurious and it looks like credit is due to a 1995 issue of Gourmet Magazine (insert sigh at the loss of Gourmet). Of course, I couldn’t help but modify the recipe to fit what I had on hand, so I used sharp cheddar cheese instead of the Jack or Gruyère and since it isn’t tomato season any more, I used all plum tomatoes since I couldn’t get my hands on yellow tomatoes. I also intensified the tart with the addition of sun-dried tomatoes. Finally, I made a whole-wheat crust to add some nuttiness to the tart. If I didn’t know how much butter and cheese went into this bad boy, I would have eaten the entire tart in a day. I resisted, shared with the husbanders, and tried to remember that the tart is supposed to yield 12-16(?!?) servings of eating in instead.
TOMATO AND ONION TART WITH WHOLE WHEAT CRUST
For the Whole-Wheat Crust
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole-wheat flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
3/4 cup (1 ½ sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into small squares
6 to 7 tablespoons ice water
For the Tart
2 large onions, preferably Vidalia but yellow onions will work, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained and roughly chopped
2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
~ 1 pound plum tomatoes cut into 1/2-inch wedges (this is about 8-9 tomatoes)
1/4 cup Niçoise olives, pitted
Start with the crust. In the bowl of a food processor, pulse together the flours and salt. (If I have time, I like to chill the flours before I start the recipe, but it isn’t a requirement). Add the cold butter and pulse 10-15 times until the mixture takes on the texture of a coarse meal. With the food processor on, quickly add the ice water through the feed tube and stop the food processor immediately after the dough comes together.
NOTE: There is a significant risk of over-processing the dough using this technique so you can also add the water manually to avoid over-processing. To add the water manually, pour the flour and butter mixture into a large bowl and add the water 1 tablespoon at a time an incorporate the water with a fork until the dough just starts to come together.
Form the dough quickly into a ball, flatten into a small disc, then wrap in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least an hour. Do this last step quickly, minimizing your contact with the dough. The goal here is to keep the butter cold and not melt it with your hot little hands.
While the dough is chilling, add the olive oil to a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and cook, over medium heat, stirring occasionally until the onions are soft, about 15-20 minutes. Turn off the heat and let the onions cool.
Pre-heat the oven to 375F. After the dough has chilled, roll the dough on a lightly floured surface into a 14-inch round disc. Transfer the dough into the tart pan, trim the edges and lightly press the dough into the pan.
Add the onions in one layer, then sprinkle over with sun-dried tomatoes, and cheddar cheese.
Arrange the tomato wedges on top and place olives on top. Season with salt and pepper, then bake the tart in the oven on the middle rack for about 1 hour, or until the pastry edges are golden.