Caramelised Red Onion & Goats Cheese Tarts

caramelised red onion goats cheese tartsSomething that you may not know about me is that for a year and a half I helped to run/manage a village pub…My mum bought one and ended up needing help to run it, so myself, Damian and Ringo (and our cat Skitz, who ended up staying with my parents when we left the pub) moved from Birmingham to a tiny village in West Sussex where we lived upstairs in the pub and helped manage it, despite never even having done any bar work before…We learned a vast amount, did a bit of everything including serving drinks, waiting tables, working in the kitchen, admin, stock ordering, hiring staff, organising events, looking after the cellar, writing menus, decorating, till programming and cleaning the drains….amongst many other things…There were some good times, some lovely people and beautiful countryside, we made friends and I got to go horseriding again (after having to sell my horse a few years previously); but it was incredibly stressful and non-stop. Living in the pub there was no privacy and no such thing as a day off…(or even an hour off…). The pub didn’t make much money, so we were earning less than minimum wage, and we were both stressed and tired; there were some truly horrible/nasty/racist/interfering locals and we ended up having arguments with my mum, the head chef/co-owner and each other. So we made the decision to leave and go back to Birmingham, and were much happier for it. It was an experience, though one I never want to repeat…

caramelised red onion goats cheese tartletsAnyway, the point of all that rambling being, that my mum recently made the decision to sell the pub, and as she and Serge (the chef/co-owner) don’t want to go back into the restaurant business, they have very kindly given me a lot of the kitchen equipment from the pub. And when I say a lot, I mean A LOT, I am seriously struggling to fit it all into my badly designed, lacking in storage space kitchen…but it is all very good quality (much better than I can afford!) and I will never need to buy another pan again…(no promises…). There was also quite a lot of food to clear out, so my cupboards are stocked up as well. This included a massive bag of red onions and a kilogram log of goats cheese…hence these caramelised red onion and goats cheese tarts.

caramelised red onion goats cheese quicheThe base is a crumbly shortcrust pastry flavoured with parmesan cheese and caraway seeds, it is very simple to whizz up in a food processor (you can do it by hand as well), just remember to make sure that your butter and water are very cold to ensure that your pastry is crisp. Because the filling is wet, the pastry needs to be blind baked before adding the filling mixture, you will need some ceramic baking beans, but you can also use dried rice or beans if you don’t have any. The filling is made with red onions which are slow cooked with sugar, balsamic vinegar, thyme and star anise until they are soft and sticky. This is topped with a mixture of egg, milk and cream, flavoured with a little nutmeg, and a round of goats cheese – mine were sliced from the kilogram log but you can buy two 100g rounds of cheese and cut each one into two slices. I garnished mine with sprigs of fresh rosemary which lent a subtle taste, but they aren’t necessary.

caramelised red onion goats cheese mini quichesThe recipe makes four 13cm tartlets, but you could probably make one 20cm one if you prefer, it would take a little longer to bake though (about 30 mins). They are creamy and delicious, sweet and tangy from the onions and cheese, with a hint of spice to round out the flavour. We enjoyed them as a main meal with a generous pile of salad but they would also make a nice starter (note that if you want them to be completely vegetarian make sure that you use a parmesan that is suitable for vegetarians).

caramelized red onion goats cheese quiche

Caramelised Red Onion & Goats Cheese Tarts
 
Author:
Makes: 4
Ingredients
Pastry
  • 200g plain flour
  • 100g cold butter, diced
  • 20g parmesan, grated
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp caraway seeds (optional)
  • 3-5 tbsp ice cold water
Filling
  • 500g red onions, thinly sliced
  • 2tbsp olive oil
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 75ml balsamic vinegar
  • 3 tbsp dark brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 90ml whole milk
  • 80ml double cream
  • generous pinch grated nutmeg
  • salt and pepper
  • 200g goats cheese rounds (two 100g rounds, each cut into 2 slices)
  • 4 small sprigs fresh rosemary to garnish (optional)
Instructions
  1. Place the flour, butter, parmesan, salt and caraway seeds into a food processor and blitz until the mixture resembles fine crumbs. With the motor running, add the water 1 tbsp at a time until the pastry forms a ball (you may not need all of the water). Alternatively, rub the butter into the other ingredients by hand then add the water.
  2. Form the pastry into a ball, wrap in clingfilm and place in the fridge for about half an hour.
  3. Heat the olive oil in a wide pan and add the onions and star anise. Fry for about 15-20 minutes over a medium/low heat until the onions are soft and golden brown in colour.
  4. Add the thyme, balsamic vinegar and sugar and cook for a further 10 minutes until the mixture is thick and glossy. Remove from the heat, discard the star anise and leave to cool.
  5. Divide the pastry into 4 equal pieces. Roll each piece out on a lightly floured surface until it is large enough to line a 13cm/5in tart tin. Line each of the four tins with the pastry, pressing it into the edges. Trim off the excess pastry, prick the bottom all over with a fork and return the tins to the fridge to chill for another 10-15 mins.
  6. Meanwhile, heat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas mark 4.
  7. Line each pastry case with greaseproof paper and fill with baking beans. Bake for about 20 mins then remove the paper and beans and return to the oven for a further 10 mins until the pastry is pale golden.
  8. Whisk together the eggs, milk, cream and nutmeg and season with salt and pepper.
  9. Divide the onion mixture between the pastry cases, pour over the egg mixture so it comes almost up to the top. Place a goats cheese round on each tart and garnish with a sprig of rosemary (if using).
  10. Bake for about 20-25 minutes until golden, puffed up and set. Allow to cool slightly before turning out and serving.
Notes
1. You will need four 13cm (5in) round, loose bottomed tart tins.

caramelized red onion goats cheese tartscaramelized red onion goats cheese mini quichesI am sharing these with Totally Talented Tuesdays, Create Link Inspire, Foodie Fridays, Fiesta Friday, Foodie Friends Friday & Friday Favorites

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48 Comments on Caramelised Red Onion & Goats Cheese Tarts

    • hannahhossack
      March 20, 2015 at 1:58 pm (2 years ago)

      Thank you 🙂

      Reply
  1. Tracey@WhatsforDinnerDoc.com
    March 20, 2015 at 1:37 pm (2 years ago)

    I love your web design and recipe template. Please share your designer or plug in info. Thanks, Tracey

    Reply
    • hannahhossack
      March 20, 2015 at 1:57 pm (2 years ago)

      Hi Tracey, I use the Adelle theme – any tweaks are done by myself or my partner. The recipe template plugin is Recipe Card.

      Reply
  2. Tracy
    March 20, 2015 at 5:43 pm (2 years ago)

    Wow! Running the pub sounds exhausting! But, it looks like it was at least kind of worth all that work to get all of the wonderful kitchen supplies! And these tarts? Gorg!

    Reply
    • hannahhossack
      March 21, 2015 at 11:17 pm (2 years ago)

      It was shattering! But the supplies are at least a bit of a reward 🙂

      Reply
  3. Nancy
    March 20, 2015 at 6:34 pm (2 years ago)

    Beautiful tarts! The caraway seeds in the pastry sounds is a brilliant touch. And the filling? Yummy! Thanks for sharing these delicious savory treats with the Fiesta Friday group!

    Reply
    • hannahhossack
      March 21, 2015 at 11:19 pm (2 years ago)

      Thanks Nancy 🙂 I couldn’t resist adding that little extra touch to the pastry!

      Reply
  4. Loretta
    March 20, 2015 at 7:21 pm (2 years ago)

    Oh these are just too good to eat… love all the ingredients, the pastry is to die for, and all those caramelized onions and parmesan cheese…yum, yum, yum!

    Reply
  5. Hilda
    March 20, 2015 at 9:32 pm (2 years ago)

    That is a great story! I’m glad all the food and the equipment found such an appreciative and creative owner.

    Reply
    • hannahhossack
      March 21, 2015 at 11:15 pm (2 years ago)

      Thanks Hilda, I’m certainly going to put it all to good use! 🙂

      Reply
  6. Giramuk's Kitchen
    March 20, 2015 at 10:51 pm (2 years ago)

    These look amazing! How lucky are you to get such an amazing “loot”!! 🙂 loving the flavour combinations here and I love the individual sizes too! Pinning 🙂

    Reply
    • hannahhossack
      March 21, 2015 at 11:15 pm (2 years ago)

      Thank you! I went to the pub to help my mum clear it out and became very much like a kid in a candy shop picking things to keep! 🙂

      Reply
  7. tentimestea
    March 21, 2015 at 12:23 am (2 years ago)

    Oh my, how delicious! So many flavourful ingredients and that round of goat cheese… 🙂 what a lovely use of the excess ingredients you obtained.

    Reply
  8. chefjulianna
    March 21, 2015 at 5:20 am (2 years ago)

    Completely love these tarts!! How very lucky you are to have received all that kitchen gear! 😀

    Reply
    • hannahhossack
      March 21, 2015 at 11:10 pm (2 years ago)

      Thanks Julianna 🙂 Yes it was very kind of them!

      Reply
  9. Jhuls
    March 21, 2015 at 10:21 am (2 years ago)

    What a lovely looking tarts, Hannah. How’s your new kitchen gears right now? Have you found spaces for them? 😀

    Reply
    • hannahhossack
      March 21, 2015 at 11:09 pm (2 years ago)

      Thanks Jhuls 🙂 no I haven’t! I’ve got stuff piled up in boxes…I think I’m going to have to empty out my cupboards and do a complete kitchen rearrange…

      Reply
  10. Julie is HostessAtHeart
    March 21, 2015 at 3:55 pm (2 years ago)

    This is another amazing recipe. My father owned a tavern while I grew up. We hardly ever saw him and then when I got a bit older, I had to clean it on Sunday’s. He persuaded me from working in that environment.

    Reply
    • hannahhossack
      March 21, 2015 at 11:01 pm (2 years ago)

      Thank you 🙂 The pub industry isn’t one I would recommend to anyone, it really does take over your whole life…

      Reply
  11. lorraine williamson
    March 21, 2015 at 9:06 pm (2 years ago)

    this looks absolutely lovely pinned and yummed thanks for sharing visiting from foodie friday have a great weekend

    Reply
    • hannahhossack
      March 21, 2015 at 10:59 pm (2 years ago)

      Thank you! 🙂

      Reply
  12. Divine Spice Box
    March 21, 2015 at 11:11 pm (2 years ago)

    stunning pics and such a brilliant recipe ! I love the taste of caramelized onions and goat cheese… hence these tarts sounds delicious to me all the way !! Thanks for bringing to FF

    Reply
    • hannahhossack
      March 21, 2015 at 11:31 pm (2 years ago)

      Thank you! They are some of my favourite flavours too 🙂

      Reply
  13. Liz @ spades, spatulas, and spoons
    March 22, 2015 at 2:54 am (2 years ago)

    Wonderful recipe, love the round of goat cheese in the middle. I was moaning as I read the recipe. I am pinning it for the future.

    You made good use of the tart tins. Hope you are able to find places to store everything.

    Reply
  14. Lili
    March 22, 2015 at 3:18 pm (2 years ago)

    Beautiful tarts and photos! And must also taste delicious! 🙂

    Reply
  15. Alison
    March 23, 2015 at 11:57 am (2 years ago)

    I love goats cheese, it is perfect for a tart. Yours look so pretty

    Reply
  16. Natalie Browne
    March 23, 2015 at 7:19 pm (2 years ago)

    These look and sound absolutely delicious

    Reply
  17. kellie anderson
    March 23, 2015 at 9:11 pm (2 years ago)

    Oh my days these look so pretty. I love the addition of caraway in the crust – characterful and delicious. I’ve come over via Emily at A Mummy Too, attracted by the lovely image. I’m not disappointed! Beautiful.

    Reply
  18. Honest Mum
    March 25, 2015 at 7:44 pm (2 years ago)

    Perfect picnic food or a summer’s lunch! So, so pretty! Thanks for linking up to #tastytuedays

    Reply
  19. Lydia Gerratt
    March 26, 2015 at 10:27 am (2 years ago)

    These look amazing – I love your photo’s. How lucky are you to inherit all that kitchen equipment!

    Reply
  20. Helen at Casa Costello
    March 27, 2015 at 8:37 pm (2 years ago)

    I love this insight into your past life. That equipment sounds amazing and your tarts look fantastic. Thanks for joining in with #FoodieFriday x

    Reply
    • hannahhossack
      March 30, 2015 at 4:14 pm (2 years ago)

      Thanks Helen 🙂 all the equipment has been very useful! x

      Reply
  21. lucyparissi
    March 28, 2015 at 10:57 am (2 years ago)

    Yes, yes a thousand times yes! I think I am having a When Harry Met Sally moment… but these do look SOOO good! Beautiful styling and photography as well. I know you will make good use of all the inherited kitchen stuff and equipment even if you struggle to fit it all in. Your blog is such an exciting place Hannah – can’t wait to see what you make every week! Thanks for linking to #CookBlogShare

    Reply
    • hannahhossack
      March 30, 2015 at 4:07 pm (2 years ago)

      Thanks Lucy! They were delicious 🙂 being vegetarian I’ve made a fair few savoury tarts in my time and these have to be some of the best! I think I’m going to have to do a complete kitchen clearout and re-arrange to try and make space… x

      Reply
  22. Winnie
    March 29, 2015 at 8:56 am (2 years ago)

    Wowwww
    These are such amazing tarts!! They look fantastic and I’m sure they taste great!!
    Pinning, and definitely planning to try your recipe

    Reply
    • hannahhossack
      March 30, 2015 at 4:10 pm (2 years ago)

      Thanks Winnie 🙂

      Reply
  23. wheelie38
    March 30, 2015 at 11:40 am (2 years ago)

    These look stunning, your pictures are so good. My brother in law would love them I, like me loves chees 😀 I found you through #FoodieFriday

    Reply
  24. sylvieamesee
    April 15, 2015 at 2:51 pm (2 years ago)

    We have rosemary trees in our garden and we dry it and reduce it into powder. Be sure I’ll combine it with goat cheese when I’ll cook these tarts!

    Reply
    • hannahhossack
      April 17, 2015 at 1:38 pm (2 years ago)

      I’ve got a rosemary bush in my garden too 🙂 I love have fresh herbs to hand!

      Reply
  25. bristol plasterers
    May 14, 2015 at 12:00 pm (2 years ago)

    This sounds lovely. Going to give this a go. thanks for sharing this recipe.

    Simon

    Reply
    • hannahhossack
      May 20, 2015 at 10:46 am (2 years ago)

      Thank you 🙂 Hope you like it!

      Reply
  26. Susan
    November 19, 2015 at 2:22 pm (1 year ago)

    Do these tarts freeze? They look beautiful!

    Reply
    • hannahhossack
      November 20, 2015 at 10:29 am (1 year ago)

      I haven’t tried myself but freezing them shouldn’t be a problem, reheat them from frozen in a medium oven for about 20 minutes when you want to eat them.

      Reply

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