Starting out the new year, I thought it might be nice to begin with a savory scrummy, instead of always being sweet-fixated!
This caramelized onion and goat cheese tartlet is another family favorite – usually prepared as one big tart. However, for an afternoon tea, I like this two-bite version that is the perfect individual serving size for the savory course.
Now, a couple of words of warning – when you cook down the onions, be prepared for your kitchen to smell of the onions for awhile! If you have a family sensitive to the cooking of smelly vegetables, maybe send them off to a movie or to run errands for a couple of hours so you can let your creative (and onion) juices flow!
Secondly, preparing the pastry for individual tartlets is a bit fiddly – certainly more fussy than making this into one big puff pastry tart. But if you asked me, I think the effort is well worth it.
I simply searched YouTube for a “how to make puff pastry diamonds” video to figure out how to cut the puff pastry to make this shape, which suits these ingredients perfectly. Below are my pictures of the process.
They’re ready to construct at this point, or if you want to make the onion mixture and prep the pastry a day ahead of when you plan to serve them, that works too. Just close the onions up in an airtight container, cover the pastry with cling wrap to keep it from drying out, and assemble before you plan to serve them.
Caramelized Onion and Goat Cheese Tartlets
- 1 medium red onion
- 1-2 Tbsp. olive oil
- 2 tsp. granulated sugar
- 2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
- 1 package Pepperidge Farm puff pastry sheets (in the US these come in a 2-count package in the freezer section – you’ll only need one); or make your own
- 1 4 oz. package goat cheese
- 1 egg for brushing on pastry
DirectionsTo make the caramelized onion: Slice the red onion into thin strips or dice into small pieces. Saute the sliced onion in olive oil over low heat until soft.
Add the sugar; stir until the onions are coated, then add the balsamic vinegar. Cook until reduced.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Prepare the pastry: Take one of the pastry sheets and roll it out a bit more, until you can get 20 similar squares out of the sheet. Cut out with a knife or pizza roller.
To make the tartlet form, fold each square in half on the diagonal, and slice up both sides of the triangle from the longest edge, without cutting all the way through to the top of the triangle – you should have two thin “wings” on each side that are still attached at the top.
Open the pastry back up into a square, and fold first one of the “wings” over to touch the other side. Then fold the other “wing” back over so you have a framed square with two ends. You are now ready to fill the inside of the frame with the onion mixture.
Lay out your prepared pastry tartlets on a piece of parchment on a cookie sheet, and fill the inside of each frame with the prepared onion mixture.
Crack the egg into a small bowl and roughly mix using fork, breaking the yolk. Use a pastry brush to dab a little egg wash on each of the pastries to give the pastry a golden finish in the oven.
Bake in the 400 degree oven for 10 minutes, then lower the temperature to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Pull out the half-baked tartlets and top each tartlet with a small slice goat cheese.
Bake another 10-15 minutes, or until the tartlets are golden brown and the cheese is soft and melty.
These are best eaten warm when not too long out of the oven. You can prepare the onion mixture even a day ahead of time, and bake just before your tea party or meal.
These make a nice addition to a savory afternoon tea course – pretty on the plate and delicious to eat. Though I like them best when they are warm and just cooled off enough to not burn one’s mouth – so they might not always make it that long in my house!