One of the things I find most amazing about cooking is the way the simplest of ingredients can be turned into a dish that is, frankly, sublime. Red onion tart is such a dish. The onions are gently sautéed with a pinch of thyme, then placed in the tenderest of savory pie shells, sprinkled with cheese, bathed in a mixture of egg, milk and cream, salted, peppered and sprinkled with nutmeg. And all it takes to prepare this creation is one red onion.
Tarte à l’oignon rouge / Red onion tart
While onion tart is ubiquitous in France, red onion tart is less so. Why do I prefer it? Red onions are slightly sweet and tend to caramelize while cooking, lending a flavor that is both earthy and ambrosial. Which is not to deny the appeal of all sorts of French onion tart — from the rich onion pies of the north, with bacon and cream, to the onion pizzas of the south, with anchovies and black olives (pissaladière). Another relative is quiche aux poireaux — leek quiche — which may just come along here one of these days. It is all fine French winter fare. Add a bottle of red, a salad and voilà — dinner is served.