Caramelized Onion and Chèvre Tartlets

Image of Caramelized Onion and Chèvre Tartlets with Agrodolce sauceLooking for an appetizer when dinner is a long way off? Try these. The combination of caramelized onions, chèvre and dried apricots make this sweet and somewhat savory, so they have wide appeal.

The agrodolce sauce is optional but try it - especially if you haven't had it before. It's easy, versatile and a few drops go a long way. You'll have some left. I don't recommend trying to divide the recipe. You can enjoy it later on veggies, meat (I like this version on pork) or - OMG - grilled pineapple.

As far as the pan goes, you have options. I used a shallow muffin pan, but you can use a cupcake pan, a mini muffin pan or a proper tartlet pan. Whatever works for you will be fine, just keep an eye on the time while they're in the oven so they don't burn. 

A word about the crust. I like to make it from scratch but if you're low on time, and are planning to use a prepared pie crust, I recommend making a large rustic tart. Place the dough on a baking sheet, layer the ingredients in the center and leave a 2" border. Fold the extra dough loosely toward the center and bake as directed on the package for a single layer pie crust.

Time: 1 hour 45 minutes (includes making the dough).
Level: Average
Yield: 12 tartlets or 1 tart

Tartlet Filling
1 tsp olive oil
1 medium onion, sliced very thinly
1/2 tsp fresh rosemary, minced
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tsp organic honey
pinch of salt
6 oz chèvre (room temp)
3 tbsp Greek yogurt
6 organic dried apricot halves, rough chopped

Simple Agrodolce Sauce
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tsp organic honey
3 dried apricot halves
2 tbsp red wine (or water)

Easy Tartlet Crust: Click for recipe

Make the Easy Tartlet Crust and refrigerate for about 1 hour.

3-step image illustrates how to caramelize onionsMeanwhile, in a sauté pan with a cover, heat the olive oil on medium.  Add onions and turn heat to medium-low. When the onions start to soften (approx 5 minutes), add the honey, balsamic vinegar, salt and rosemary. When the honey
has liquefied, turn the heat to low, cover, and continue cooking until caramelized (approximately 25 minutes). Stir occasionally so the onions cook evenly and don't dry out. If they start to dry or stick to the pan sprinkle with a little water. Once caramelized, remove from the heat.

Agrodolce Sauce vinegar reduction processWhile the onions are cooking, make the agrodolce sauce. In a small pan, bring vinegar, wine and honey to a boil. Add apricots and continue to cook until the sauce reduces to 1/2 it's volume. It will be thick and look like molasses. Remove from heat, remove apricots, and keep warm. This sauce will thicken when it cools, so remember that you have to drizzle it on the tartlets. If it gets too thick you may have to reheat it and/or add more liquid. You will have more than you need so refrigerate any left over.

Mix chèvre and Greek yogurt for the filling and topping. It will be creamy and easy to spread. Reserve 1/3 of the mixture for the topping.

Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees.
Roll out the dough, cut with the circle cutter and press into the muffin pan. The sides should be a minimum of 1/2" tall in order to hold the filling.

Caramelized Onion and Chevre tartlets with dollop of chevre on topImage illustrates 4-step process of filling tartlet shells Fill the tartlets in the following order; chèvre mixture, apricots, caramelized onion mixture. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and put a dollop of the creamy chèvre atop each tartlet. Return to the oven for 5 more minutes. The crust should be golden and the chèvre topping, hot. Remove from the oven.

Drizzle the agrodolce on each (refrigerate left over agrodolce). When the tartlets are cool enough to handle, remove from the pan. These can be served warm or at room temperature. I like to serve them with apple or pear slices.

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