Another annual tradition: the Oscar party. For more than a decade my sister and I have been hosting an Oscar get-together where everyone throws cash into a kitty and bets on the winners, and—best of all—makes a movie and/or actor-themed dish. This year (and last) because neither Julie or I have TV, our dear friend Sarah enthusiastically took over hostessing duties and opened her home to everyone and their creative dishes, including The Fantastic Mr. Slaw, Coralime Pie, The Brine Side, and my oh-so-popular George Clooney Is Hot And So Are These Meatballs—what am going to do one year if George isn’t nominated for something?
I also tried a new dish: Caramelized Onion Tarts With Apples. Aka, Crazy Tart! This recipe is incredibly easy and makes two attractive tarts. I played with it a bit, adding thyme to give the flavor some texture. The only problem I had with this recipe is that it’s hard to get good apples these days. Even if I go to the Farmer’s Market, chances are they’ll be mushy. I think I’d like to try this with pears next time. It’s definitely one of those recipes that begs for experimentation, depending on what’s in season.
Caramelized Onion Tarts With Apples
adapted from Real Simple
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 medium onions, sliced
- 2 red apples (such as Braeburn or Gala), cut into small pieces
- Sprig of fresh thyme
- Fresh ground salt and black pepper
- 2 sheets frozen puff pastry (from a 17.3-ounce package), thawed
- 1/2 cup crème fraîche
1) Heat oven to 400º F.
2) Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and golden brown, 12 to 15 minutes. (For some reason I find that I always have to cook onions longer than a recipe calls for. In this case 20-25 minutes covered to get them to a caramelized state.) Put the sprig of thyme in with the onions and let it simmer.
3) Remove thyme. Stir in the apples, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper and cook until just tender, 2 minutes.
4) Place each sheet of pastry on a parchment-lined baking sheet and prick all over with a fork.
5) Spread with the crème fraîche, leaving a ½-inch border.
6) Top with the onion mixture and bake until the pastry is crisp and browned, 30 to 35 minutes.
7) Cut into pieces before serving.
**Photos by Julie Fay Ashborn