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Onion Tarte

1 recipe Pate Brisee, rolled 1/8-inch thick to fit 11 1/2 inch tart pan
3 large white onions, peeled and sliced (about 9 1/2 cups, loosely packed)
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/4 cup water
3 eggs
1 cup Fromage Blanc, see note
1/2 cup heavy cream
Salt, freshly ground pepper and a pinch of nutmeg to taste

Note: To make Fromage Blanc, combine equal parts plain lowfat yogurt with low-fat ricotta cheese. Pass through a fine strainer and store in refrigerator 24 hours before using.

Heat oil and butter in a large non-stick frying pan, add onions and cook slowly over low heat until onions are soft and begin to brown, about 20 minutes. Add water and cook an additional 10 minutes until onions are lightly browned and caramelized.

Beat eggs in a large bowl then combine with Fromage Blanc and cream, whisking until smooth. Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg. Add onions and mix well. Pour mixture into prepared pastry shell and bake in a preheated 400-degree oven 45 to 50 minutes until crust is browned and filling has lightly browned and puffed. (Jane Citron bakes hers on a cookie sheet.)

Serve tart at room temperature, allowing it to rest 15 to 20 minutes before cutting. Makes 10 servings.

New Year's Day Menu 2000 with Sendall and Citron

Pate Brisee Pastry Crust

Makes one 11 1/2 -inch tart shell.

1 1/4 cups sifted unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
3 to 4 tablespoons ice water

Combine flour and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Add butter cubes and pulse the machine 12 to 15 times or until the butter is coated with flour and forms particles the size of peas resembling very rough sand.

With the motor running, add 3 tablespoons water. Stop processing before the dough forms a ball. Turn dough (there will be pieces) onto a floured surface, and if very dry, add a little more water. Form into a ball by taking the dough in one hand; using the dough ball as a mop, gathering the loose particles on the counter.

With your wrist flat on the counter, extend your hand upward at a 45-degree angle and with the heel of your hand, slide the dough 6 to 8 inches forward only. When all the dough has been used, reform into a ball and repeat the operation. This procedure is called fraiser, or final blending. Flatten dough into a disc, wrap in wax paper and refrigerate 30 minutes before using.

To roll pastry: Flatten dough with a rolling pin and roll on a lightly floured board or cloth to 1/8-inch. Fold dough in half, lift carefully and fit dough into tart pan, trimming excess dough from around the rim. Turn crust under and level top rim with a rolling pin or your fingers.

New Year's Day Menu 2000 with Sendall and Citron

Monday, December 27, 1999

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