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CARAMELISED ONION PEAR THYME AND CAMEMBERT TART WITH PISTACHIOS AND PUMPKIN SEEDS

August 6, 2010

Fairview……mention the name and immediately my mind conjures up beautiful white Saanens goats walking up and around a tower!! After that first thought comes the rest of what Fairview means to me. A lovely days outing eating in the Goatshed, tasting all the cheese and wines. Beautiful wines & beautiful cheeses. In fact some of the best cheeses produced locally as far as I am concerned. I discovered their Brie and Camembert a few years ago and love them. In fact if you look closely at the header photo on this blog you will see some oven baked camembert with thyme, white wine, olive oil and a drizzle of honey, a wonderful way to spend some time at the table, al fresco on a balmy evening, watching a glorious Cape sunset with a crisp white wine in hand and a bowl of oozing, seductive, creamy camembert cheese waiting to have some torn toasted pita or ciabatta or bread sticks dipped into its warmly inviting and gooey inside….bliss!! More recently I was also converted to White Rock with Apricots and Cranberries. When my turn comes round to host bookclub I make sure I have it on my cheeseboard and it is always the first cheese to disappear!! And Fairview Wines? Legendary. The farm has always been one of my favourite places to visit when we take a drive out to the wine farms. Our children used to love watching the goats and that famous tower and we are now looking forward to taking our grandsons to the farm one of these days to introduce them to the goats. It has been wonderful to watch over the years how the farm has developed to where it is today – still one of my favourite places.

So, when I saw that they were running a blogging iniative and promotion for their Camembert  and inviting bloggers to participate it seemed only natural for me to enter and I am so glad that I am now a part of this exciting challenge. I wrote to them with about 6 ideas that I had, I was writing it all down so fast because my mind and imagination were in overdrive but sadly I could only choose one of those wonderful ideas that I came up with. I will of course do them all at some stage and blog about them when I do. But for now I present to you my

Caramelized Onion, Pear, Thyme & Camembert Tart with Pistachios & Pumpkin Seeds.

Caramelized Onion Pear Thyme & Camembert Tart with Pistachios & Pumpkin Seeds

Such a mouthful….but such a delightfully yummy mouthful!

A browniegirl inspired recipe (serves 6 for a light meal)

Ingredients:

200g Puff Pastry

2 Medium Red Onions – Peeled and sliced

10ml Olive Oil

10ml Butter

Few Sprigs Fresh Thyme – leaves stripped off and stalks discarded

25ml Verlaque Wildflower Honey Balsamic Reduction

15ml Molasses

6 Soft Eating Sundried Bon Chretien Pears (from Woolworths)

125g Fairview Camembert – cut into 6 slices then each slice halved

50g Pistachios – dry toasted in a pan then roughly chopped and set aside

10g Pumpkin Seeds – dry toasted then set aside

50g Dried Cranberries

Salt & Freshly Ground Black Peppercorns

1 Egg + 1 Egg Yolk

50ml Fresh Whipping Cream

5ml Dijon Mustard

Finely grated Nutmeg & White Pepper

This is how I made them:

Place the onions & thyme into a deep heavy based frying pan together with the oil and butter and a dash of white wine. Allow to boil gently over a medium heat until the liquid has evaporated and the onions start sauteeing in the residual butter and oil. Saute until translucent and beginning to turn light gold then add the Balsamic Reduction and the Molasses together with a pinch of Maldon sea salt flakes, stir well to mix, reduce heat to low and allow to caramelize slowly for about 15 minutes or so. You can’t rush this part and you also need to watch it so that it does not burn. Allow to cool before using.

Preheat oven to 200 deg Celcius

Roll out your defrosted puff pastry (I used frozen store bought but if you have the time and energy do try to make your own) and then cut out your desired shape/s I made individual tartlets by cutting 12 indentical rounds of pastry using a fluted cutter. I then cut out the middles of 6 of the rounds using a smaller straight edged cutter so that I had 6 “rings” I patted the edges of the 6 remaining rounds with my fingers dipped in some milk and then placed the 6 rings gently on top of each round (the milk makes the layers stick together). Place the 6 tart cases onto a baking paper lined cookie sheet and brush the top edges with milk 

Place a spoonful of the caramelized onions into each tart case, sprinkle around some chopped pistachios, pumpkin seeds and cranberries

Make a custard by whisking the egg, egg yolk, cream, mustard, nutmeg and pepper together

Pour about 5ml of the custard into each tart case then place one pear piece on top of each one

Bake for about 15 minutes on the middle oven rack then remove from oven, place 2 pieces of camembert on top of each pear, drizzle over a bit of the Balsamic Reduction and return to the oven for another 10 minutes until the cheese has started to ooze  over the top of the tarts.

Garnish with some chopped pistachios, drizzle over a bit of fruity Extra Virgin Olive Oil and serve with a green salad

Fairview’s La Capra Chardonnay, nicely chilled, was a wonderful accompaniment to this fabulous meal which we enjoyed al fresco on the patio under todays beautiful sunny skies.

Thank you Fairview for this challenge and allowing me to become creative with Camembert  

 Please visit the Fairview Blog and vote for my recipe. It is at No. 10 on the list. I am up against some serious food gurus and I need your votes please 🙂 You may vote for 3 recipes so do go and visit all the other bloggers and see their contributions to this great event.

Enjoy!

browniegirl xx

44 Comments leave one →
  1. August 6, 2010 12:27 AM

    VERY enticing and such yummy ingredients. Voted already!

    • August 6, 2010 12:45 AM

      WOW! That was quick!! I’ve only just finished my edit. PC crashed halfway through 😦 Thanx so much for the vote xx

  2. August 6, 2010 1:16 AM

    Oh Colleen that looks fantastic! Makes me homesick to visit Fairview… Love the flavours in these & off the vote now!

    • August 28, 2010 8:05 PM

      Thank you Jeanne, Fairview is as lovely as ever. Yesterday we were treated to a tour around the lambing pens, nursery and creche to pet and cuddle and feed the kiddies and then we had a tour of the cheese factory. Beautiful place. So clean. Great staff. After that we had lunch with the owners and CEO at the Goat Shed. It was fabulous! Hugs xx

  3. August 6, 2010 5:15 AM

    Wow! Your tarts look and sound delish! My vote is in!
    Hugs
    xxx

    • August 28, 2010 8:06 PM

      Thank you Halfy, didnt work too good for me as I didn’t win but gosh they spoiled us to a wonderful outing and lunch and a delicious gift box of cheese and wine and goodies. So we were all winners in the end. Hugs there to you and Marmee too xx

  4. August 6, 2010 5:18 AM

    Yikes Colly, these tartlets look so good!! Lovely pics!

    • August 28, 2010 8:07 PM

      Thanks so much Nina. Much appreciate your comments always. Hugs and thank you so much for the lift and the lovely chatting that went with it. Hugs xx

  5. August 6, 2010 5:33 AM

    Pure genius!

    • August 28, 2010 8:08 PM

      Thank you Cindy, I got some good inspiration from the product I had to work with… :o) xx

  6. whippingitup permalink
    August 6, 2010 8:52 AM

    They look deeeeelicious, Colleen… including the pastry… hmmmmmmmmm!!!

    • August 28, 2010 8:09 PM

      Hmmmmm they were delicious Lana, thank you so much for the visit and comment. Hugs to you xx

  7. August 6, 2010 9:47 AM

    Great entry, yum!

  8. August 6, 2010 11:38 AM

    Making me hungry! I love Fairview too. Must go again soon. I’ve been over and voted already. Good luck!

    • August 28, 2010 8:11 PM

      THank you so much for yhe voting and kind words Kit. Do take your family to see Fairview. It is stunning at the moment with the kidding season in full swing. You and the children can get to cuddle and play with the little dudes and feed them their bottles too. Great fun for kids to do…we had so much fun there yesterday xx

  9. August 6, 2010 11:39 AM

    Wow, I’m glad I’m not one of the judges over at Fairview, because all of the entries I’ve seen so far are outstanding! These would be so lovely for a fancy brunch.

    • August 28, 2010 8:13 PM

      Thanx Marisa, it is certainly how I would serve them…as part of a lovely laid back al fresco lunch with some girlfriends and some crisp and cold white wine. Hila won the competition xx

  10. August 6, 2010 11:42 AM

    Golly – that looks like ‘(happy) death by tart’! Gorgeous, delicious, genius!

    • August 28, 2010 8:14 PM

      High praise indeed Robyn, thank you so much for that. Much appreciated. xx

  11. August 6, 2010 2:14 PM

    simply adore this colleen! wow! the flavors are an explosion!

    • August 28, 2010 8:14 PM

      Thank you my spicy friend. Much appreciate your comment. Hugs to you xx

  12. August 6, 2010 5:28 PM

    Its vegetarian! Yipee! Now I just have to get somebody to cook it for me…. *giggle*

    • August 28, 2010 8:15 PM

      Oh what the heck, come over this way and I will make it for you……hehe. But I want to still teach you how to make it yourself!! *giggle*

  13. August 8, 2010 3:43 PM

    Excellent photos!! And great recipe mmmmmm

    • August 28, 2010 8:16 PM

      Thanx Nadine, how did the New York gift fair go??? Hope it was good for you and Adi. Hugs and thanx for popping in xx

  14. August 8, 2010 11:25 PM

    Awesome…wow..making me hungry!! x

    • August 28, 2010 8:17 PM

      Howdy buttercup600 thanx for the visit and also for the comment. I appreciate it. Hugs xx

  15. August 14, 2010 6:06 AM

    Now you see why i don’t visit often…. it is 6am and now I am HUNGRY!!! Lovely pics and will definitely try out the recipe sometime ;}

    • August 28, 2010 8:18 PM

      Hey billi sorry for making you hungry so early in the morning….hehe..bad time to visit food blogs girl. Thanx so much for the visit and comment. Do try it out as it was delicious! xx

  16. August 17, 2010 12:58 AM

    I am falling…falling…falling…into my screen to eat this lovely dish! Great post and pics! My mouth is watering!

    • August 28, 2010 8:20 PM

      Thank you for the visit and the lovely comment sweetie….I hope you try it out. It is delicious and worth it. Hugs xx

  17. August 23, 2010 5:55 PM

    Ag no man, every time i come here i want to eeeeeeeeeeat! 😉

    • August 28, 2010 8:20 PM

      Sorry, and its still the same old same old. Promise I will blog more soon…xx

  18. August 24, 2010 3:11 PM

    Oh my word…I am starving and I popped in to see what you were up to…now I am ravenous!!!

    • August 28, 2010 8:22 PM

      OH NO!! Granny are you still trying to lose those last few kgs?? Stop it now man! You are looking totally stunning my friend. Was wonderful to see you the other day. Pop in again please…love you xx

  19. August 31, 2010 10:34 AM

    Mmmmm you had me at cheese, but then the pastry? cheese and pastry? are you kidding?! This has my name on it! a MUST-make for this weekend, thanks browniegirl!

    • October 25, 2010 5:43 PM

      LOL! Cheese sluts rule. I still have to try and dig out my badge and put it up here on this blog :o) Thanx polkadotcupcake. Hugs xx

  20. September 2, 2010 11:46 PM

    W-O-W!

    Excellent!

    Stunning photos as always too.

    • October 25, 2010 5:40 PM

      Thank you dear Toks, you are as complimentary as always too 🙂 Hugs to you xx

  21. September 3, 2010 1:28 AM

    These tarts looks delicious Colleen. The farm factory visit sounds like a nice day out.

    • October 25, 2010 5:39 PM

      Thanx so much Barbara. It was a wonderful outing to the farm. A most enjoyable day. xx

  22. September 15, 2010 11:43 PM

    Hi. Reading the recipe made my mouth water. Looking forward to making this at the weekend. The Verlaque looks hard to get in England what do you advise as an alternative?

    • September 16, 2010 12:10 AM

      Hi there and thank you so much for visiting and commenting. I believe that Verlaque is available in the UK now but maybe at select stores…not sure. But use any balsamic reduction that you can find. Fruit or honey infused are fab but plain balsamic would work just as well. Enjoy!! xx

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