– Hey everyone. We’re back. All right. Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. Joel, I need you back up real quick, please. Thank you. Six feet. Alright everyone. We are back in the Serious Eats Test Kitchen. So excited to be back here.
I’ll take the mask off. We all got tested for this shoot. We’re looking good. We’re excited to be cooking again today. Today we are making a French onion soup tarte Tatin combining two very famous French things into a savory tart.
French onion soup. Tarte Tatin. Combined, French onion soup tarte Tatin. Perfect for cold weather eating. (upbeat instrumental music) For the first part of this recipe really is rolling out the dough for the crust of the tarte Tatin.
So for this dough I’m using Stella’s classic pie dough. So we’re just gonna flour our board. Stella always says you can be generous with the flour cause we can just brush it off after rolling. Get the dough out on the board.
And again, you flour the top. You’re trying to get to a ten-inch circle. So, you know, I’m not a math magician, but you can just sort of make it work. – [Woman] A math magician? – Yeah. Math magician.
I dunno, everyone in the comments can sound off of my terrible rolling technique. I’m not a trained pastry chef. – [Joel] Are you more of a Fred Durst when it comes to rollin? – I don’t like Limp Bizkit Joel.
And so you’re cutting a ten-inch circle, like I said. You know, if you’ve got an isolated protractor situation, you could do that, or just use a ten-inch skillet that you’ll be cooking or baking your tart in.
You can use anything that’s oven-safe. A cast iron pan works great. Carbon steel or stainless steel. So now we’ve got this round and we’re gonna make a little border around it. Not like a crimped crust.
You don’t have to get fancy or anything. So you’re just doing like a half inch. And we’re looking to get now a nine-inch circle, which will fit in our pan afterwards. Boom nine. So into the fridge two hours, and then we’ll come back and do the rest of this.
The dough is chilling in the fridge, I was about to say, chilling in the oven. It’s not chilling in the oven. It’s chilling in the fridge. And we can turn our attention to the onion. So, three medium-sized, yellow onions, one of which gets sliced up thinly pole to pole, how we always slice onions.
The last two onions, cut them in half through the root end without taking off the root end, peel them, and then we’re just gonna trim the root end while keeping it intact. We want to keep the onion attached through the root end, but we just don’t want all of this sort of gnarly bit like that.
Then what do we do? I’ll answer what we do. We cut through that sucker like so, boom. We’ve got two pieces. We’re going to make those into four pieces. How do you do that? Like so. And so you’ve got this nice, attached, beautiful quarter wait no eighth, an eighth of an onion.
I can do math. But you should have sixteen pieces. And a traditional tarte Tatin, for if you’re making an apple tarte Tatin, you’d have the apple wedges slices and then you’d have a caramel that would fill in that negative space.
We don’t want a, this isn’t dessert. We don’t want a caramel in here. So what we’re going to do is make a caramelized onion sort of jam that will fill in that negative space and using some stock to give that flavor of the the broth that you would have in a traditional French onion soup.
So this is a tablespoon of unsalted butter. We want to cook these down as quickly as possible. One way to speed up that process, always with onions, season them with salt. Salt draws out moisture. And we want to juggle, whoa, going real rustic with this pepper grinder.
Hold on. We’re not making au Poivre over here. We’re just doing caramelized onions. We’ve talked about fond. You’re starting to see that here, right? Around the sides. Perfect. We’re moving these around.
Just add, you know, a couple of tablespoons of water at a time, and then, kind of scrape that fond off as you go. The onions are gonna to cook down, that water’s gonna to evaporate, and we’re just gonna to rinse, repeat, rinse, repeat, rinse, repeat.
While this is a cookin away here, we can sort of get the rest of the tart set up. You want a ten-inch skillet for cooking the tart. It needs to be oven-proof. What does that mean? It means it needs to be able to go in, withstand high temperatures in the oven.
You’re gonna be flipping this over. So take your cast iron pan and be honest with yourself. Do you feel comfortable flipping this over? Is it going to hurt your wrist? Do you have a carpal tunnel issue? Have you, like me, not been doing a ton of at home workouts cause a quarantine? No problem.
Stainless steel is a little lighter. We’re gonna start with three tablespoons of softened, unsalted butter, and then we have a tablespoon of sugar. Clean hand. Get in here. Get smush it all in there. And you want to create a nice even layer of butter on the bottom of the pan, and it can come up to sides just a touch.
Then, you’re going to take a tablespoon of sugar and sprinkle it evenly over the pan. And so then, we are going to arrange in nice, you know, concentric crop circles, the onions into the skillet. So we want the root end pointed towards the center.
Like that. And we’re gonna get each piece in a nice little fan in that situation. This is what it’s gonna be flipped over presentation side. So what’s touching the pan is gonna be what people are going to see, the spectacle of it all.
You’re going to have ideally thirteen, sort of on this outer ring here, and then you’ll get a nice little three spot in the middle like so. Boom, look at that. Okay, so this will be the last addition of water I think before we move on to the next part of this, but you see the onions are starting to get jammy.
We’re getting continuous fond creation on the sides here. Just keep sort of deglazing. And now we’re gonna deglaze with just a tablespoon or so of dry sherry. And then we’re gonna add some stock here.
So this is a three-quarters of a cup of, this is beef stock, you can use chicken stock, beef stock, or you can use a store bought, you know, chicken stock or beef stock. Most of the stock is cooked down, and we want it just to be coating the onions in between the negative space.
And then we’re just gonna add a dash of fish sauce and cider vinegar. So a quarter teaspoon or so. I’m just gonna. Kill the heat. And this is what we got. And now we’re going to sear slash caramelize slash get some nice color on these onion wedges.
High heat, don’t touch anything. Let it go. So you want to keep an eye on the onions as they’re searing, as that sugar is caramelizing. What you want is deep, deep, deep, deep, deep, dark brown. Not burnt, you know, nice caramelization of the sugar.
You’ll sort of notice that the onion wedges start to fan out a little bit between the layers as they cook down. And you may need to do this sort of dance of, you know, moving the skillet around on the burner, depending on how even the flame is.
So I think we are in a good place here. I feel good about this. I’m getting just like a little bit of charring on the edges, which I like. So we’re going to have the heat low at this point, cause it’s at where I want.
And we’re going to get these onions in. Fill in all that space. Especially, you want to focus on the space in the center. Everything will get melted together on the heat for, you know, 30 seconds a minute.
What have you. Turn off the heat. Next up, we have some Gruyere cheese. You can’t have French onion soup without some melty cheese. You want a melting cheese. Something with a little bit of funk to it.
We need to get a little ventage chaping. A little venting. You know, the pie crust isn’t gonna like let go of all it’s pent up aggression and not that kind of venting just, we need some steam to be able to escape during baking, so that we get a crisp crust and not a soggy one.
So we’re just going to do three little slits and then you can do what’s called docking. Not doxing, docking of the pie crust. So you can use one of these sort of torture devices, or just use a fork. And just make little, ta, ta, ta, ta.
And then the last option you have is a choose your own adventure here. If you want a little more sort of viscidity, a little background savoriness, you have the option of a little bit of mustard on this crust, I really like.
But, you don’t have to. So something like a nice Dijon. Dijon. And just sort of spread it around. Don’t go crazy. You don’t want a ton. Like a teaspoon or two. As long as the pie dough is cold, you shouldn’t have any issues.
Pick it up with your hands, and just transfer it. And so we’re going to flip it so that this is in contact with that. This border is gonna just sort of hug around and make a nice little home for the onions.
And everyone is happy like that. Perfect. Like a glove. It’s going in a four-hundred degree oven for thirty to thirty-five minutes, until the crust is golden brown. So thirty minutes, we’ll see you then.
Pie comes out of the oven and you let it cool for five minutes or so, either on your stove top, or you can set up a wire rack on a rimmed baking sheet, if you’d prefer. We are gonna try the flipsky right here.
So, plate of the flat variety, or a tray that’s flat needs to be larger, or as large as your pan. You want to just be confident. So this has been cooling for about five minutes. Upside down like so. Secure the plate with your off hand, then in a smooth motion and a flip it over and wait for it to release Release.
Release. There we go. Oh, we’ve got stickage. But we’re going to figure this out. It’s gonna be great. All right, so, we’re going to play a little game of operation here. We want this to look perfect, but we can also make it look better.
And at the end of the day, it’s just going to taste great. And see, we’ve like successfully put it all back together. It’s Humpty Dumpty. Humpty onion. Looks good to me. The tart has cooled. We are now ready to eat, slice, serve up the tart.
Treat yourself, you know, it’s been a hard year. Give yourself a real slice. This is gonna be great. Can’t wait to try it. Mm. So you’ve got the sweetness of the caramelized onions, a little bit of char on the outside from the caramelization of the sugar.
You’ve got that nice, sort of nutty Gruyere cheese in the background there, with just a hint of tang from the Dijon mustard, all with this crispy, flaky, buttery crust. You can serve this up as an appetizer, delicious.
Or just, you know, it’s a cold night out, you want to treat yourself to a nice soothing, stick-to-your-ribs dish, make this. Perfect. It’s like soup in tart form. French onion tarte Tatin. I’m gonna keep eating, it’s really, really good.