Dear friends were in town recently and came for an early brunch. I made eggs in custard cups, this onion tart, a simple smoked trout salad (I'll figure out exact proportions; that day, I was making it up as I went along), and carrot cake (a divine version; recipe next week). We lit a fire in the dining room, the sun was shining after a storm, and it was a memorable morning. It wasn't the food, it was the company. But when the company is that good, it always makes me love the food.
Freeform onion tart
2 1/4 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
12 tablespoons butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 egg plus 1 extra yolk
1/3 cup sour cream
Flour (for sprinkling)
1. Have on hand a large rimless baking sheet.
2. In a food processor, pulse the flour and salt to sift them. Scatter the butter on the flour mixture and pulse again until the mixture forms coarse crumbs.
3. In a bowl, beat the egg, extra yolk, and sour cream. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and pulse until the dough forms large clumps. Do not let it come together to form a ball.
4. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured counter and knead gently for a minute until smooth. Shape into a flat disk and wrap in foil. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
5. On a lightly floured counter, roll the dough to a rectangle about 16-inches long and 12-inches wide. Lift it onto the rolling pin and ease it onto the baking sheet. Moving around the dough, turn the outside edge onto itself like a hem. With the tines of a fork, press the hem all around, dipping the fork in flour when necessary. Prick the bottom of the pastry well all over.
6. Refrigerate the dough.
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 large onions, coarsely chopped
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat the oil. Add the onions, salt, and pepper. Cook, stirring often, for 25 minutes or until the onions begin to melt. Set the onions aside to cool.
2. Set the oven at 400 degrees.
3. Spread the onions in the pan up to the edges, so there are no onions on the forked area. Bake the tart for 40 minutes or until the pastry is golden. Do not remove the tart from the oven until the seams where the forked hem and the edges of the onions are browned.
4. Let the pastry cool slightly on the pan. Slide it onto a board. Sprinkle with parsley and cut into large squares. Sheryl Julian
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ContributorsSheryl Julian, the Globe's Food Editor, writes regularly for the Food section.
Devra First is the Globe's food reporter and restaurant critic. Her reviews appear weekly in the Food section.
Ellen Bhang reviews Cheap Eats restaurants for the Globe and writes about wine.