This is a very tasty dish and one that is on the menu a lot at Cafe. It’s simple to create, even if you have a go at making your own pastry. The slowly-cooked onions add truly amazing flavours to the dish. And the purple sprouting broccoli, very underused in my opinion, adds another layer of deliciousness, and pairs really well with the creamy Clava Brie from Connage Highland Dairy near Inverness. But you could try a different cheese, like a Lanark Blue, for a stronger flavour.
Makes 4 small tarts
250g plain flour
125g unsalted butter, diced small
Cold water to bind the pastry
12 slices of organic Clava cheese
2 large onions, peeled and thinly sliced
A good handful of purple sprouting broccoli, woody stalks removed
Good salt and pepper
50ml cold-pressed rapeseed oil
A few sprigs of thyme
To make the pastry for the tart cases, add the plain flour and the diced butter to a mixing bowl and rub together until they resemble breadcrumbs. Then add a pinch of salt and trickle in enough cold water to make a good pastry dough. Wrap the dough in cling film and place in the fridge for an hour or so to rest.
Pre-heat your oven to 180°C and lightly grease and flour 4 small tart tins. Remove the chilled dough from fridge and flour your work surface. Cut the pastry into four evenly-sized pieces and roll each piece into a ball. Then roll each ball into 2mm-thick circles and place into your cases, trimming off the edges of any excess pastry. Blind bake with greaseproof paper (or 3 layers of cling film) and baking beans for 40 to 50 minutes - until the tarts are crisp and golden brown.
To caramelise the onions, heat 25ml of oil in a pot then add the sliced onions. Season with salt and pepper then put the lid on and cook on a medium heat for about an hour, stirring occasionally. The onions should be golden and caramelised. Remove from the heat and stir in a few sprigs of thyme.
Divide the onions between the 4 tart shells, then lay 3 slices of Clava cheese on top of each tart and trickle with a little oil. Top with some thyme leaves and season again. Gently warm the tarts under the grill or in the oven.
Next, bring a pot of water to the boil and blanch the purple sprouting broccoli for 3 to 4 minutes until tender. Remove from the water and season.
Divide the broccoli between 4 warmed plates and place the tarts on top. Trickle any remaining oil all over the tarts and broccoli, and serve.