Carmalized Onion Tart with Roast Chicken

067_Huss_9780449015612_art_r16 SERVINGS


21⁄2 cups flour
2 tsp cracked black pepper pinch of salt
1 tsp sugar 1 cup unsalted cold butter, cut into small cubes
3 Tbsp cold water
1 egg


1⁄2 cup olive oil
8 medium onions, sliced thinly
4 cloves garlic, sliced
salt and pepper
1 Tbsp sugar small handful of fresh thyme (leave some to garnish)
2 Tbsp sumac plus extra to coat the chicken
3 chicken breasts, on the bone
olive oil
salt and pepper
fresh pomegranate seeds
1⁄2 cup toasted pine nuts


[1] In a bowl put the flour, black pepper, salt and sugar and mix.

[2] Put in the cold butter cubes and using your fingers rub the butter into the flour to make a crumbly consistency.

[3] Make a well in the center and pour in the water and egg.

[4] Bring the flour gradually together and mix quickly to make a smooth dough.

[5] Flatten slightly into a disk and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 1 hour until ready to use.

[6] Preheat the oven to 375°F.

[7] Roll out the pastry to fit two 13- x 4-inch tart pans with a removable bottom.

[8] Prick the base with a fork. Chill in the fridge for 20 minutes.

[9] Line the pastry with parchment paper (or foil), fill with dried beans to prevent it from rising and blind bake for 15 minutes.

[10] Remove the beans and paper, turn down the oven temperature to 350°F and bake for an additional 15 minutes until they have a light golden color.

[11] Cool the pastry completely.

[12] Remove from the pan, place on flat serving platters and set aside.

[13] Put the olive oil in a large heavy-based pot. On medium heat sauté the onions and garlic.

[14] Sprinkle in the salt, pepper and sugar. Stir to coat the onions well and turn down the heat to low.

[15] Add the fresh thyme.

[16] Cook gently, stirring, taking care not to burn them. The onions will caramelize and sweeten as they cook. This will take about 40 minutes.

[17] When they are meltingly soft, remove from the heat and stir in the sumac. They will turn a pinkish color.

[18] Pour into a colander sitting in a bowl to drain the excess oil.

[19] Preheat the oven to 375°F. Coat the chicken with olive oil, salt, pepper and sumac. Roast for about 30–40 minutes. When done, remove, cover lightly with foil and leave to rest.

[20] To assemble the tart, spread the caramelized onions on the pastry.

[21] Remove the chicken from the bones, thinly slice and place on top of the onions.

[22] Garnish with pine nuts and a few fresh thyme sprigs and pomegranate seeds.

Excerpted from Modern Flavors of Arabia.  Copyright © 2012 Suzanne Husseini.  Published by Appetite by Random House, which is a division of Random House of Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.

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