I had my big oven on while making my lamb chops, cauliflower ‘cous cous’ and roasted baby vegetables, so popped a tray of cut red onions in to roast too. I was keen to try out a baby beetroot and roasted red onion tart tartin which I had seen Michel Roux Jnr make on his show Food & Drink the night before.
The red onions I used were quite small so I trimmed the ends and cut them in half so they were more or less the same size. I roasted these and the baby beetroot for about 25 minutes at 180 C, until they were cooked through and starting to caramelise. You can roast onions slowly for a very long time, but I wanted to keep some texture for the tart. It is important to roast them before otherwise they will be too firm if they are baked in the tart only.
If you don’t have baby vegetables, use normal-sized, but ensure you cut them into roughly the same thickness so they make a more or less even layer in the tart.
I made and shot this right at the end of the day in the last few rays of daylight, so I forgot to add a very important element, the cheese. I had a block of the most delectable goat’s milk Pecorino which I shaved generously over the tart. It totally made the dish.
I bought this recently at the Cheese Festival and it’s a real winner for me because it hits my adoration for goat’s cheese head-on (it’s very goaty), but has the texture and saltiness of Parmesan. The tart is fairly sweet, so this really does need a cheese of sorts. I think creme fraiche mixed with goat’s cheese would also be lovely. Michel didn’t use balsamic or cheese in his recipe, but I felt those elements really helped offset the sweetness of this tart.
If you missed my beetroot series in 2011 – you can click the link and see how I got carried away with this marvellous bright red vegetable.
Recipe | serves 4
Roasted onion and beetroot tarte tatin
- 200 g baby beetroot peeled and ends trimmed
- 500 g small red onions peeled, trimmed and cut in half (or to the same thickness as the beetroot.
- 60 g sugar
- 2 T balsamic vinegar
- 4 - 5 sprigs of thyme
- 1 x 250g ready-made butter puff pastry
- sea salt and pepper
- goats cheese pecorino or Parmesan to serve or other similar
- Preheat the oven to 180 C and roast the onions and beetroot as per the instructions above, with a few thyme leaves, salt and pepper for 25 - 30 minutes.
- In a medium-sized pan (I used a 23cm oven-proof frying pan) heat the sugar and balsamic vinegar until it becomes a caramel (about 4 - 5 minutes). Don't stir this, just swirl it around until it starts bubbling and thickening. At this point, remove it from the heat and scatter over a few sprigs of thyme, as well as leaves from about 2 sprigs onto the caramel. Arrange the slices of beetroot and onion evenly (cut side facing down) over the bottom of the pan.
- Place the puff pastry over this and tuck the edges lightly down the sides, and bake in the oven for 20 minutes until golden brown.
- Remove the tart from the oven, allow it to cool slightly and then invert it over a large plate. Shave goat's cheese Pecorino, Parmesan or crumble goat's cheese over the top and serve.
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