A white tablecloth, elegant crockery, a bouquet of flowers… Everything is ready this Sunday to reunite the family for grandmothers’ day. It is an eagerly awaited moment which reunites all the generations for a good meal! For the occasion, we have chosen to honour the pearl onion, a little vegetable that is both graceful and roguish. Slow cooked in honey and white balsamic vinegar, the tender and dense character of their flesh is emphasised by caramelising them in lovely little tatin tartlets. Accompanied by wedges of ricotta, their sweetness is contrasted by the fresh tones of this immaculate cheese and livened up by a few grains of pepper.
The A.O.C. Rasteau that you have chosen gives further depth to this authentic and gourmet dish. Its intense ruby colour with violet glints is a clue to the aromas of red berries and stewed plums of its nose. They accentuate the gentle scent of thyme honey rising from the plate. On the palate, the elegant and smooth tannins mingle with the sweetness of the dish for an enveloping sensation. After expressing its fruity roundness, this red wine offers a finish of spicy notes. A harmonious and expressive wine like a reflection of the atmosphere when a family gets together to share a moment of pleasure.
Preparation time: 50 minutes / Rest time: 30 minutes / Cooking time: approx. 25 minutes / Serves 4
For the shortcrust pastry
- 250 g of flour
- 125 g of butter
- Warm water
- 1 pinch of salt
For the garnish
- 250 g of ricotta
- 600 g of pearl onions
- 1 tbsp of olive oil
- 60 g of butter + 10 g to grease the tartlet tins
- 2 tbsp of thyme or rosemary honey
- 5 tbsp of white balsamic vinegar (or white balsamic condiment)
- 4 sprigs of thyme
- Freshly ground salt and pepper
For the pastry
- In a bowl mix together the flour, salt and butter with your fingertips until crumbly.
- Add the water little by little to form a ball of pastry which is smooth but not sticky. Put the pastry in the fridge to rest for 30 minutes.
- After this rest time, spread some flour on your work surface and roll out the pastry thinly with a rolling pin.
For the garnish
- Preheat the oven to 200°C.
- Relax the ricotta with a couple of turns of your pepper mill and return to the fridge.
- Blanche the peeled onions in a large pan of water for 6 minutes. Drain.
- Melt the butter with the oil in a frying pan. Add the pearl onions and fry them gently for around 12 minutes, stirring regularly.
- Add the honey, white balsamic vinegar, and thyme. Cook gently for around 5 more minutes until the ingredients begin to caramelise. Season with salt and pepper. Leave to cool.
- Lightly grease the mini tart tins (around 10 cm in diameter).
- Place a helping of onions in each tartlet tin, share out the cooking juices between them and add 2 little knobs of butter on top of each helping of onions. Cover all the tartlet tins with a circle of pastry and push the pastry securely into the upper edge of the tins.
- Cook in the oven for around 25 minutes. The pastry should be golden and give a glimpse of the bubbling hot caramel beneath.
- After taking them out of the oven, allow to cool for a moment before transferring the mini tarts from their tins onto the plates.
- Shape the wedges of ricotta using 2 tablespoons and place a wedge on each tartlet before tucking into this starter accompanied by a mesclun salad.
Tip: you can adapt this recipe with other vegetables (shallots, cherry tomatoes, aubergines, endives, turnips, etc.).
Enjoy! For more recipes, click here!
Photo credits C’est Ma Food.