Appetizers / Snacks/ french/ Party/ savoury tarts

Puff pastry onion tart with pear and blue cheese

1 February 2020

Amazing puff pastry tart topped with golden caramelized onions, pear slices, and sharp blue cheese. It consists of only a couple of ingredients that provide bold flavors. This savory onion tart is sure to impress at any elegant party and also makes a delicious appetizer that you can serve just for dinner with a soup.

Puff pastry onion tart with pear and blue cheese cut into squares

Ingredients:

  • Onions – I used yellow onions. White onions can also be used. I don’t like using sweet onions for caramelizing because then they’re just too sweet and won’t work well in this recipe since we’re also using a sweet pear.
  • Clarified butter – You can use regular butter, olive oil or vegetable frying oil to cook the onions, but I prefer the clarified butter. It doesn’t burn so quickly as regular butter but adds an amazing flavor.
  • Pear – use unripe or just slightly ripe fruit. Ripe fruit will fall apart, be mushy and will release too much moisture which will make the puff pastry soggy. Alternatively, you can use an apple, but I prefer this tart with the pear.
  • Blue cheese – it’s best to use sharp blue cheese, better is semi-hard and crumbly rather than creamy. Both will work though. I used cow’s milk cheese similar to Roquefort cheese.
  • Puff pastry – it’s best to use all-butter puff pastry – it just tastes best. In my opinion, there is no comparison (in terms of taste) between palm oil-puff pastry and butter-puff pastry.
  • Heavy cream or egg wash. I usually use the egg wash (an egg beaten with a tablespoon of milk) to brush the edges of tarts, but a tablespoon of heavy cream works well too. It helps to add a golden color to the pastry. There’s is no sense to take one whole egg when you need to use just a little.

Caramelizing the onions:

I wish I could write that caramelizing onion takes just a minute and this tart will be ready in no time. To properly caramelize the onions you need a minimum of 45 minutes but it takes usually a whole hour. This step can not be unfortunately speeded up. For this recipe, I’m caramelizing the onions for only 25 minutes, because we’re baking them in the oven for another 25 minutes, which finishes their caramelization.

a close up shot on puff pastry tart with caramelized onions, pear, and blue cheese

How to make it step by step:

uncooked and caramelized onions in a frying pan

STEP 1: Caramelize the onions: Peel 3 medium yellow onions (14 oz/400g) and cut into thin slices. Heat 2 Tbsp clarified butter in a big frying pan or pot. Add the onions. You can start cooking them over medium-high / medium heat, and then gradually lower the heat as they start to get color to medium-low / low heat. Don’t cook the onions over too high heat or they will burn and be bitter. Stir from time to time (at the beginning rarely, later more often, and at the end very often). The onions should be partially caramelized and it should take about 30 minutes. We don’t need to fully caramelize the onions (this would take about 50-60 mins) because they will be baked in the oven. Unfortunately, this process can not be speeded up. Take the onions off the pan and leave to cool.

STEP 2: Preheat the oven to 375°F / 190°C / Gas Mark 5, no fan.

STEP 3: Cut 1/2 of a large pear in half, core the quarters and cut into thin slices. You can leave the skin on.

STEP 4: Take the dough out of the fridge. You will need 1 (8.5oz/240g) sheet puff pastry. Score the dough: with the tip of a sharp knife, score through the top layers of the puff pastry by running the knife along all four sides of the dough (leave about 1/2 inch / 1.5 cm border). Do not cut all the way through the dough. Transfer the pastry, along with the parchment paper that comes with it to a baking sheet. Prick the dough (not the borders) with a fork.

scoring the border of a puff pastry sheet

STEP 5: Place the pear slices on top of the dough.

raw puff pastry topped with caramelized onions and pear slices

STEP 6: Divide the caramelized onions evenly over the pear slices.

raw puff pastry topped with caramelized onions, pear slices and blue cheese

STEP 7: Crumble blue cheese on top.

STEP 8: Brush the edges of the tart with heavy cream or make the egg wash (whisk 1 egg with 1 Tbsp of milk) and brush the pastry with it.

STEP 9: Bake the tart in a preheated oven for about 25 minutes or until puffed and golden.

The most important tips when working with puff pastry:

  • Don’t top the puff pastry with too many ingredients – it won’t puff properly and be soggy.
  • It is very important that the filling is cold before putting it on the puff pastry (make sure to cool your onions).
  • The dough itself must be cold. Take it out of the fridge only when you have all the other ingredients ready.
  • If you’re using frozen puff pastry, you must first thaw it in the fridge overnight. Don’t thaw it quickly on the counter or it can crack.

Storage:

This caramelized onion tart tastes best fresh, just after baking, when it’s still slightly warm. After about 2 hours it’s won’t be crispy anymore. You can warm it up in the oven, it will be still delicious but just not as crispy as freshly baked one. Store it in the fridge, tightly wrapped in plastic foil, then reheat.

A piece of puff pastry onion tart with pear and blue cheese on a white plate

How to serve this tart:

  • It’s great for parties – cut it into squares and serve as an appetizer (finger food). You could also bake small round tartalettes – they look prettier but it’s more work and you get lots of pastry scraps (you could always roll them in cinnamon sugar and bake as cookies, similar to palmier cookies).
  • For a more elegant party, you could serve it as an appetizer with a simple green salad on the side.
  • I sometimes serve it with soup for dinner. Carrot coconut soup or pumpkin and ginger soup with orange would be perfect.

Other savory puff pastry recipes that you may like:

Puff pastry onion tart with pear and blue cheese

Amazing puff pastry tart topped with golden caramelized onions, pear slices and sharp blue cheese.
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 340kcal
Author Aleksandra

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons clarified butter or olive oil
  • 3 medium yellow onions 14 oz/400g
  • 1/2 large pear unripe or just slightly ripe
  • 2.5 oz 75g sharp blue cheese, better is semi-hard and crumbly than creamy
  • 1 sheet puff pastry 8.5oz/240g
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream or 1 egg + 1 Tbsp milk

Instructions

  • Caramelize the onions: Peel the onions and cut into thin slices. Heat clarified butter in a big frying pan or pot. Add the onions. You can start cooking them over medium-high / medium heat, and then gradually lower the heat as they start to get color to medium-low / low heat. Don't cook the onions over too high heat or they will burn and be bitter. Stir from time to time (at the beginning rarely, later more often, and at the end very often). The onions should be partially caramelized and it should take about 30 minutes. We don't need to fully caramelize the onions (this would take about 50-60 mins) because they will be baked in the oven. Unfortunately, this process can not be speeded up. Take the onions off the pan and leave to cool.
  • Preheat the oven to 375°F / 190°C / Gas Mark 5, no fan.
  • Cut the pear into quarters, core it and cut into thin slices. You can leave the skin on.
  • Take the dough out of the fridge. Score the dough: with the tip of a sharp knife, score through the top layers of the puff pastry by running the knife along all four sides of the dough (leave about 1/2 inch / 1.5 cm border). Do not cut all the way through the dough. Transfer the pastry, along with the parchment paper that comes with it to a baking sheet. Prick the dough (not the borders) with a fork.
  • Place the pear slices on top of the dough.
  • Divide the caramelized onions evenly over the pear slices.
  • Crumble blue cheese on top.
  • Brush the edges of the tart with heavy cream or make the egg wash (whisk 1 egg with 1 Tbsp of milk) and brush the pastry with it.
  • Bake the tart in a preheated oven for about 25 minutes or until puffed and golden.
  • Enjoy!

Notes

  • Ingredient notes:
    • Onions – I used yellow onions but white onions can also be used.
    • Clarified butter – You can use regular butter, olive oil or vegetable frying oil to cook the onions, but I prefer the clarified butter.
    • Pear – use unripe or just slightly ripe fruit. Ripe fruit will fall apart, be mushy and will release too much moisture which will make the puff pastry soggy. Alternatively, you can use an apple.
    • Blue cheese – it’s best to use sharp blue cheese, better is semi-hard and crumbly rather than creamy. Both will work though. I used cow’s milk cheese similar to roquefort cheese.
    • Puff pastry – it’s best to use all-butter puff pastry – it just taste best.
  • Storage: it tastes best fresh, just after baking, when it’s still slightly warm. After about 2 hours it’s won’t be crispy anymore. You can warm it up in the oven, it will be still delicious but just not as crispy as freshly baked one. Store it in the fridge, tightly wrapped in plastic foil, then reheat.
  • General tips on working with puff pastry:
    • Don’t top the puff pastry with too many ingredients – it won’t puff properly and be soggy.
    • It is very important that the filling is cold before putting it on the puff pastry (make sure to cool your onions).
    • The dough itself must be cold. Take it out of the fridge only when you have all the other ingredients ready.
    • If you’re using frozen puff pastry, you must first thaw it in the fridge overnight. Don’t thaw it quickly on the counter or it can crack.
  • How to serve this tart:
    • It’s great for parties – cut it into squares and serve as an appetizer (finger food). You could also bake small round tartalettes – they look prettier but it’s more work and you get lots of pastry scraps (you could always roll them in cinnamon sugar and bake as cookies, similar to palmier cookies).
    • For a more elegant party you could serve it as an appetizer with a simple green salad on the side.
    • I sometimes serve it with soup for dinner. Carrot coconut soup or pumpkin and ginger soup with orange would be perfect.
Course Appetizer, Side Dish
Cuisine French-inspired, international
Keyword caramelized onion tart, French onion tart, pear and blue cheese tart, puff pastry tart, savory tart

Did you make this recipe? Let me know how you liked it and give it a star rating in the comments below! You can also add a photo of your creation!

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