I spied out of the corner of my eye a mound of sweet ripe figs and could not resist picking up a few for a tart I had in mind. My first attempt at using figs; a roasted fig and almond tart; had been a sweet success, and I was eager to try something a little more savory.
I was reminded of the icy Winter mornings commuting to the Cape Town city centre, when I would pass by a boulangerie owned by a French couple, and respond to the silent call of their nutty sweet smelling freshly baked loaves and pastries. My favorite was the brie, sage and walnut breakfast bread. It was roughly in the shape of a Naan, but the flavors and technique were all French.
And so it was that I grabbed a wedge of brie, brown onions for these caramelised onions, fresh sage and a dozen fresh figs for roasted figs with honey and orange and made this fragrant and flavorful Caramelised onion, fig and brie tart.
The tart was easy to make and even easier to eat, when it finally made it’s appearance. Sweet, savory, crunchy…
Caramelised onion, fig and brie tart
- 12 small ripe figs stalks removed
- 1 orange juice and zest
- 15 ml honey
- 375 grams all butter puff pastry or a sheet of ready rolled puff pastry. If using, bread dough it will require proving.
- 250 ml caramelised onions
- 200 grams ripe brie
- 10 fresh sage leaves
- 125 ml walnuts
- 1 egg beaten
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees celcius, or 180 degrees with a fan assisted oven.
Cut the figs in half lengthways.
Mix the juice of half an orange with the honey in a small bowl and toss in the figs to coat.
Arrange the figs in an oven tray cut side up and pour over the juice and honey mixture. I lined my tray with foil to catch the juices and prevent any burnt syrup on the tray.
Bake for 10 minutes and remove from the oven to cool while you prepare the pastry sheet.
Roll the pastry into a rectangle and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. If you are making appetisers then cut the pastry in twelve 7cm x 7cm squares and place in a shallow 12 hole bun pan.
Prick the pastry base/s with a fork and place into the freezer to firm up until the figs are cool enough to use.
Spread caramelised onions onto the pastry making sure to leave at least a 1 cm border on a large tart. For appetisers place 1 heaped teaspoon of caramelized onions into each depression.
Brush egg on the exposed border to help it color.
Scatter the figs cut side up over the caramelised onions, then add the chunks of brie, chopped walnuts and broken pieces of sage.
Bake in the hot oven for 25 minutes until the pastry is cooked.
For a large tart you will require all the figs but for appetisers you may require fewer figs if you slice each half into two. Use the remaining figs for breakfast over yogurt or oatmeal or for dessert over ice cream.
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This recipe was first published on 30 May 2015 and has since been updated.