Sweet Onion Salvaging

Vidalias preferred, generally sweet onions are available basically all year. In fact, since childhood, my family has picked sweet onions but the bunches over yellow and purple. I don’t think they have a beef with the other colored roots. I think sweet onions offer a dynamic to any savory dish: a sugared yin to the salty yang.

With a couple of bulbs staring me down in my kitchen, I thought it time to put the veg to use. Most often, onions in our home our used in spaghetti sauces or sometimes as a taco topping for my Meatless Monday Guacamole Tacos (No recipe? I should look into this.). But instead of a fine dice and a fragrant aroma, I’ve decided to opt for something totally new. You see, other than these onion, layers of puff pastry await their call of duty.

And now the call has come; for sweet onion tarte tatin.

Bear with me, it’s my first time with this French pastry, but in my limited cooking experience, it’s all about the inside. Cutting and baking the pre-made puff shouldn’t prove a problem.

(From here, I shall be blindly reporting my experience!)

With insides in mind, I will chuck a few small cubes of butter in my (oven-proof) pan. People sometimes ask if it will make a difference using oil or butter, and while the goal of softening is the same I think butter is a far better caramelizing agent.

As the globs melt down, the onion gets controversial. From here, it depends on how one feels about them. I LOVE them, so rough, edible chunks I think are most appropriate.

Tossing them into the frying pan with a little time to mingle, a tablespoon or two of brown sugar creates a sticky and syrupy base for the tart. To cut through the sugar, white wine vinegar goes in too (red wine or Balsamic vinegar, my guess, would be equally fine, but I used it all for my balsamic reduction the other night…whoops…).

I’m removing from heat and cutting out my pastry to fit the width of the pan (should’ve measured BEFORE frying…little tip!). Crack an egg, wash the top, and pop in the oven at around 400 degrees (F) for a good 20 minutes, perhaps slightly less. In between, I will be praying for golden, crispy pastry.

.      .       .

The result? Well, as the 0nion chunks swam in a pond of syrup and then crystallized on the pastry, it actually all came out in a fairly graceful plop onto the plate! Admittedly, I think the pearl onions or shallots would have made more sense now, as still the rough onion chunks did stick to some degree, and thus a complete unfolding did not occur. No matter! Taste-wise, crispy, buttery pastry and sugary onions pair so well, making a savory dish borderline sweet! I sprinkled my with a little time just to take it home!

I would suggest a more structured recipe, much like the ones SORTEDfood offers (check out their website, https://sortedfood.com/). I really do believe that once you get the method down, you can totally make it your own!

Now, I used sweet onions around the house to creative something finer, but we want to know what other simple ingredients you can transform completely! Comment below, share your photos, and tag us on Instagram or Facebook!

In the meantime, here are some similar recipe photos of other, similar, onion tarte tatins!

(courtesy http://www.recipes100.com)             (courtesy http://www.goode-food.co.uk)                  (courtesy http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com)  

The two great loves of my life are the movies and food; you can't take those away from me. Growing up in Oregon, where the hammering rain can't help but lead you inside great restaurants and venues, I've picked up a fine appreciation for these pieces of beauty and art, and how to give and get those along life's way. Through a life of pictures and dishes, my only wish is to be able to share with any and all my insights, misadventures, and fortunes.