Caramelized Onion, pear and bacon tart

  • Tuesday, February 9, 2016 5:48pm
  • LifeFood

Servings: 8 to 10

Why this recipe works

A cast-iron skillet retains heat like a pizza stone with the functionality of a skillet, making it the perfect tool for a tart. We topped our version with bacon, which also helped grease the pan, and onions that we caramelized in the bacon fat. To ensure that this tart had broad appeal, we mixed in pear and goat cheese to balance the savory-sweet flavor profile. We like the convenience of using ready-made pizza dough here; however, you can use our Classic Pizza Dough.

8 slices bacon, chopped fine

2 pounds onions, halved and sliced ¼ inch thick

1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme or ¼ teaspoon dried

1½ teaspoons packed brown sugar

Salt and pepper

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1 pound pizza dough (recipe follows)

1 Bosc pear, quartered, cored and sliced ¼ inch thick

4 ounces (1 cup) goat cheese, crumbled

2 tablespoons minced fresh chives

Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position and heat oven to 500 degrees. Cook bacon in 12 inch cast-iron skillet over medium heat until crisp, 7 to 9 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer bacon to bowl. Measure out and reserve ¼ cup fat; discard remaining fat.

Add 2 tablespoons reserved fat, onions, thyme, sugar and ¾ teaspoon salt to now-empty skillet. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are softened, 8 to 10 minutes. Uncover and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are deep golden brown, about 10 minutes. Stir in vinegar and cook until almost com¬pletely evaporated, about 2 minutes; transfer to bowl.

Wipe skillet clean with paper towels, then grease with 1 tablespoon reserved fat. Place dough on lightly floured counter, divide in half, and cover with greased plastic wrap. Press and roll 1 piece of dough (keeping remaining dough covered) into 11 inch round. Transfer dough to prepared skillet and gently push it to corners of pan. Spread half of onion mixture over dough, leaving ½ inch border around edge. Scatter half of pear, half of crisp bacon and ½ cup goat cheese evenly over top.

Set skillet over medium-high heat and cook until outside edge of dough is set, tart is lightly puffed and bottom crust is spotty brown when gently lifted with spatula, 2 to 4 minutes. Transfer skillet to oven and bake until edge of tart is golden brown, 7 to 10 minutes.

Using potholders, remove skillet from oven and slide tart onto wire rack; let cool slightly. Being careful of hot skillet handle, repeat with remaining 1 tablespoon reserved fat, dough, and toppings. Sprinkle tarts with chives and cut into wedges. Serve

Makes 1 pound

This recipe can be easily doubled.

2 cups (11 ounces) plus 2 tablespoons bread flour

1 1/8 teaspoons instant or rapid-rise yeast

¾ teaspoon salt

1 tablespoons olive oil

¾ cup warm water (110 degrees)

Pulse flour, yeast and salt together in food processor to combine, about 5 pulses. With processor running, add oil, then water, and process until rough ball forms, 30 to 40 seconds. Let dough rest for 2 minutes, then process for 30 seconds longer. (If after 30 seconds dough is very sticky and clings to blade, add extra flour as needed.)

Transfer dough to lightly floured counter and knead by hand to form smooth, round ball, about 1 minute. Place dough in large, lightly greased bowl, cover tightly with greased plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in size, 1 to 1½ hours. (Alternatively, dough can be refrigerated for at least 8 hours or up to 16 hours.)

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