Basel Tart

Wednesday 26 June 2013

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I was asked earlier this month if I would like to participate in the Titan Supper Club and bake a tasty recipe which hails from Basel, Switzerland, called a Basel Tart.

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The Toddster has actually been to Basel, although I have not and apparently it is a beautiful place to visit.  Nestled on the banks of the Rhine River, it actually borders on three countries, Switzerland, Germany and France and it's not difficult to see where there are influences of all three cultures in this lovely tart.  

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It has a crisp shortcrust pastry base, which a delicious filling which is made from slowly caramelized onions, milk, eggs, Gruyere Cheese (a deliciously nutty and sweet Swiss cheese) and smoky bacon.  

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It is delicately flavored with rosemary and coriander leaf (cilantro).  I was a bit worried that because they are both very strong flavored herbs they might overpower the flavors of this tart, but they worked perfectly . . . which means there is only a hint of them, allowing the smokiness from the bacon and the sweetness of the cheese and onions to shine through.  

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This tart was sooooo good, the Toddster had two servings.  And he is not one to overindulge himself in anything!  

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I loved it too.   I would make it again and now I am intrigued so much that I have put Basel on my bucket list.   Anyplace that can produce something as tasty as this is a place I deffo want to visit one day!

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*Basel Tart*
Makes one 10 inch tart
A delicious tart filled with golden onions and gruyere cheese.  Perfect picnic food.

470g plain flour (a generous 3 1/4 cups)
1/2 tsp salt
120g butter (8 1/2 TBS)
100ml of cold water (about 1/3 cup)
For the filling:
60g butter (4 TBS)
6 large onions, peeled and sliced
1/2 tsp salt
80g bacon, chopped (1/4 cup)
470ml milk (generous 2 cups)
75g plain flour (1/2 cup)
2 large free range eggs
450g grated Gruyere Cheese (about 4 cups)
2 sprigs rosemary
2 TBS chopped coriander (cilantro)    

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Sift the flour and salt into a bowl.  Drip in the butter and rub it in until you have crumbs about the size of peas.  Pour in half of the water and stir with a fork until you have a dough that holds together.  If the dough still does not hold together add the remaining water a spoonful at a time until it does.  Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for a couple minutes until it becomes smooth.   Roll out to fit into a 10 inch tart tin.  Prick the base with a fork and trim the edges.

Melt the butter in  a large saute pan.  Add the onions and saute until they begin to soften.   Add the bacon and salt.  Cook until golden brown.  Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.  

Preheat the oven to 170*C/350*F/ gas mark 4.  Whisk together the flour and milk until smooth.  Beat in the eggs, herbs and cheese.  Pour over the sauteed onions and mix together gently.   Pour this filling into the prepared pastry.  Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes.  Increase the oven temperature to 200*C/400*F/ gas mark 6. and bake for a further 5 to 10 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.  Cut into wedges to serve. 

Many thanks to Titan Travel for asking me to participate in June's Supper Club.   I've gotten to try something new and learn about a new place that I now want to visit!


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