- SERVES 2
- Prep time: 30 minutes
- Chilling time: 20 minutes
- Cooking time: 35 minutes
- For the pastry:
- 100g plain or spelt flour, plus more
- for dusting the tin and worktop
- 50g salted butter, chilled and cut into cubes (keep the cubes in the fridge until you need them), plus more for
- greasing the tin
- 1 tablespoon iced water
- 1 egg, beaten, or a little unsweetened plant-based milk, for
- brushing on the pastry
- For the filling:
- 1 tablespoon light olive oil
- 100g white onions (approx. 2
- medium), halved and thinly sliced
- 75g shallots (approx. 3 medium), roughly chopped
4 tablespoons white wine
15g plant-based butter
1 tablespoon plain, buckwheat or
- spelt flour
150ml unsweetened plant-based milk
1 teaspoon wholegrain mustard
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped
- fresh tarragon
sea salt and freshly ground black
- pepper, to taste
I love the flavour combination of the onions and shallots encased within this comforting white wine, fresh tarragon and wholegrain mustard sauce. These indulgent and warming tarts are easy to make, but they look – and taste – so good. You can make the pastry in advance, as it keeps chilled in the fridge for up to 5 days. Just take it out 10 minutes before rolling to allow it to reach room temperature. And of course, if you’re short on time, you can use shop-bought shortcrust pastry instead (and you can get gluten-free pastry).
First, make the pastry. If using a food processor, put the flour and butter in the processor bowl and pulse until it resembles bread- crumbs. Pour in the chilled water and mix again until the dough just comes together into a ball. Wrap the ball in cling film and leave to chill in the fridge for at least 20 minutes. Take it out 10–15 minutes before you are ready to use it (depending on how warm your kitchen is).
If mixing by hand, make sure you don’t let the butter get too warm and overworked; the less you handle it with warm hands the better. Place the flour in a mixing bowl and add the cold cubes of butter. Using your fingertips, gently blend the butter into the flour until you have formed crumbs, leaving some larger pea-sized clumps too. Add the water and, using a metal spoon, mix to bring the mixture together into a soft ball of dough. Wrap it in cling film and chill in the fridge as above.
To make the individual pastry cases, turn over a metal muffin tin, then grease the underside of two muffin cups with butter and dust with flour (so the pastry won’t stick later), leaving at least one cup space between them to allow for easy removal of the pastry cases when cooked. Lightly dust a clean worktop with flour. Cut your dough into two equal portions and roll each one into a ball shape. Gently roll out the first pastry ball, turning it 45 degrees each time you roll to ensure the pastry doesn’t split. Continue to roll and turn until the pastry is about 3mm thick. Repeat with the second portion of pastry. Gently lift the pastry circles and place over the greased upturned muffin tin, then carefully shape them to fit the upturned mounds. Trim away any excess pastry with scissors or a sharp knife. Place the tin in the fridge to chill for 10 minutes – this will stop the pastry cases from shrinking as they bake. Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6.
Brush the outer shell of the pastry cases with the egg or milk and place in the middle of the oven for 10–12 minutes, or until they start to turn a light golden colour. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes, then carefully ease the pastry cases off the tin and place, bottom-down, on a baking tray – the right way up now! Put them back in the oven for a further 5–7 minutes until lightly crisp, then remove and set to one side while you make the filling.
Turn the oven down to 180°C/gas mark 4. To make the filling, warm the olive oil in a small frying pan over a medium heat. Add the onions and shallots and sauté gently for 2 minutes. Pour in the wine and allow to sizzle in the pan, stirring occasionally, for 8–10 minutes, until the onions have softened and are just starting to turn brown.
In the meantime, melt the butter in a small saucepan over a low heat, mix in the flour and heat through until you have formed a paste. Take off the heat and mix in the milk a little at a time, using a whisk in order to avoid the sauce becoming lumpy. Place back over a medium heat and stir often with a whisk for 2–4 minutes until you have a smooth, thick sauce.
Stir in the mustard, chopped tarragon and the onion mixture, then season with a pinch of sea salt and grind of black pepper to taste. Scoop the mixture generously into the two pastry cases.
Pop the tarts back into the oven for 8–9 minutes, until they are hot all the way through.