When I was a child, onions were one of the few vegetables I loved to eat.
Generally they came in the form of pizza topping, but after a while onions started to adorn my sandwiches, and I sought them out whenever my mom cooked up a vat of her beef stew. Once I discovered the joy of roasted garlic, I was hooked on alliums for life.
One of the building blocks of cooking, alliums deserve a place in pretty much every meal. Granted, not everyone loves them as much as I do. I’ve been converting my 6-year-old to an onion fan, slowly but surely, because I’m sure he has an amazing cooking career ahead of him and he needs to understand the onion. Or at least, be able to throw together a fantastic pasta sauce and garlic bread.
Spring onions are one of the joys we get to experience with our year-round growing here in Texas. Though most onions are kept in the ground until their greens flop over and are ready to pull, sometimes onions bolt or need thinning, and we’re not ones for waste around here.
Tender and more gentle in flavor than the storage onions, spring onions are great for stir fries, sautés, savory breads and biscuits, and pairing with eggs. We enjoy them diced and filling an omelet, rounding out a breakfast taco, or in this simple tart.
Similar to a quiche, this tart uses only a couple of eggs, ricotta, and heavy cream. It’s a dish that is perfect to make when you might only have a few things on hand before making a run to the grocery store. Pair it with a salad for a light meal, or cut it into smaller wedges and serve it as a brunch or dinner starter.
My instructions for the tart crust use a food processor; feel free to use your favorite method to mix the crust. I find the processor gives the best, most consistent results, and has cured my days of crying over torn crust.
|Spring Onion Tart|| || |
- 1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon fresh oregano
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoons cold butter, cut into small pieces
- 4 tablespoons cold water
- ½ cup ricotta cheese
- ½ cup heavy whipping cream
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
- 1 bunch spring onions (or scallions or ramps)
- In a food processor, pulse together flour, oregano, and salt. Then pulse in butter until coarse crumbs are formed, leaving some larger pieces of butter. Pulse in water until a cohesive dough is formed.
- Turn dough out onto a piece of plastic wrap. Pat into a circle and wrap tightly, then refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
- Remove dough and roll out to fit a 9-inch tart pan. Transfer dough to pan and trim excess. Prick all over and place in freezer for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 425°F.
- Add pie weights or dried beans (with a sheet of parchment between the beans and dough) and bake for 12-15 minutes. Remove and let cool on a wire rack.
- Whisk together ricotta, cream, and eggs until smooth and somewhat foamy. Pour into the cooled tart shell and sprinkle Parmesan on top.
- Trim spring onions to size of pan, and half lengthwise if they are very large. Arrange on top of the custard.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes. Cool 5 minutes in pan, then serve.
How do you use onions as the main attraction?