Alsatian Onion Tart (Zwiebelkuchen)

zwiebelkuchen

“Don’t you want what I have?” she asks, feigning innocence. Her eyes say, “I am better than you.” I hesitate, not shameful, but convinced she couldn’t understand. “What you have is banal, unremarkable. I yearn for the exalted, more than I deserve, beyond your comprehension. I will endure rather than choose less.” I profess contentment, yet possess the greatest of restlessness. I’m content in this restlessness, perhaps.

I take a bite of my onion tart. Don’t you want what I have?


Zwiebelkuchen – Alsatian Onion Tart

A savory tart for the Alsace Lorraine region – richer than quiche. I expect nothing less from my Alsatian heritage. To gild the lily, cubed bacon can be sprinkled over the tart before baking. Adapted from Andre Soltner.


Ingredients

  • 1 9” tart crust recipe (pâte brisée or premade refrigerated shell)
  • 2 onions cut lengthwise and thinly sliced (with mandolin, if possible)
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • pinch salt
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • ½ cup grated Muenster cheese
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 pinch grated nutmeg
  • Freshly ground pepper

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a 9” tart pan with dough and dock using a fork. Freeze for 30 minutes.
  2. Sauté onions in a large skillet with butter and salt until they are golden and tender, 15-20 minutes. Set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, cover tart shell with parchment paper and fill with rice, beans, or pie weights. Blind bake for 10-12 minutes. Remove parchment and rice and bake another 5 minutes until sides of tart are barely starting to color. Remove from oven.
  4. In a bowl, whisk together egg, heavy cream, Muenster cheese, thyme, nutmeg, and pepper. Add egg mixture to cooled onion mixture, scraping up brown bits from bottom of pan. Pour onion mixture into tart shell and spread evenly.
  5. Bake 25 – 30 minutes until filling and golden brown and set. If the edges brown too quickly, cover edges with foil. Cool 10 minutes and serve hot.

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