An Onion Tart for Sunday Dinner

Good morning! Before we get to the food, I wanted to extend a huge thank you to those of you who have donated to the DALS World Central Kitchen fundraiser. I can’t tell you how good it feels to watch that amount creep up, even in increments of $5 or $10 — so keep the cash coming! (And remember, if you donate before December 18 you’re eligible to win a set of Nakano knives among other goodies. See: holiday gift guide for deets.) Truly, thank you, thank you.

Now about that good-looking Sunday dinner up there. Last week, Abby forwarded me a link to this caramelized onion galette from the NY Times with a few exclamation points. (They had her at “inspired by French Onion Soup.”) Their recipe, as NYT Cooking subscribers can see, called for sherry and beef broth, and for Gruyère to be worked into the homemade pie dough — all of which made it one of those sticky recipes, by which I mean the kind that sticks to your consciousness and follows you around all week. It was right there in my brain yesterday late afternoon, the whole time I watched Abby’s soccer game in 30-degree weather while gradually losing feeling in my toes. The game was a real barn burner, and ended in a 0-0 draw, but I couldn’t stop thinking about that galette and how it would make my toes (and the kitchen and the house and Sunday dinner) feel instantly cozy.

As I watched two dozen girls leave everything on the field, I calculated some shortcuts from the sidelines: I didn’t have sherry or beef broth, but I knew if I caramelized those onions, then baked them even more, that they’d be OK holding their own. I also knew that rolling out a homemade dough and letting it chill for a while was not likely to happen. Enter, of course, Pillsbury. In the end, the whole dinner was embarrassingly simplified and yet, just right for what I craved. Here’s what I did…

Simple Caramelized Onion Galette
Even without the beef broth, this ended up meaty and rich, so I recommend serving this with a green salad that’s been dressed with an aggressively vinegared vinaigrette. We had a basic Bibb salad with chives, grape tomatoes, and white balsamic-based dressing. Makes 2 small galettes, enough for 4 large portions or 4 small portions with leftovers.

3 tablespoons olive oil
4 large white onions, sliced
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 9-inch pie doughs (such as Pillsbury)
2/3 cup grated Gruyère
leaves from 6 to 8 fresh thyme sprigs
1 egg, whisked

Heat oven to 425°F. Add olive oil to a very large skillet set over medium-low heat. Add onions, salt, and freshly ground pepper, and cook low and slow for as long as you have to get them caramelized and make the house smell nice and cozy. After about 20 minutes, drizzle in balsamic vinegar and take them off the heat.

While this is all happening, prepare doughs, sprinkling 1/3 cup of grated Gruyère in the center of each before heaping onions on top, leaving a 1 1/2-2 inch border. Sprinkle fresh thyme on top, plus a generous amount of freshly ground black pepper. Folded in the dough as shown, then brush with egg wash and bake for 10 minutes. Decrease heat to 350°F without opening the oven, and bake another 15 minutes until the crust looks golden and the onions look jammy.

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Filed under: Vegetarian

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There is no shame in using a Pillsbury pie crust, or whatever grocery store brand is available. I’ve used them many times and been asked for my pie crust recipe! I

Can’t wait to try this simplified galette.


Laughed at “aggressively vinegared vinaigrette.” Sometimes you just need a dressing with bite to pull it all together.

Robin Driscoll

I’m laughing because my husband printed out this recipe from New York Times weeks ago and left it on my desk. I have avoided it because making the crust feels like a burden at this point in life. Lo and behold, your simplified version to save the day! There will be onion tart this week, and no one will know short cuts were involved. Thank you, as always, for inspiring me!


I have this recipe from my british mother in law. she uses Worcestershire sauce ( a word i cant spell or say) instead of balsamic.


How do you always know exactly what I want to eat when I don’t even know myself?! I made this tonight and LOVED it. Thanks!!!


This looks delicious but I don’t love Gruyere or swiss cheese. Do you have a suggestion for another substitute? Thanks!


Jenny, I know you’ve moved over onto the next platform but I was wondering if you could answer this query: If I make this for a friend, and want to freeze it so they can eat it whenever, do I freeze the cooked tart or the “raw” one (aka, dough, cheese, onions)?