Light[er] Bacon and Onion Tart
I discovered the original Saveur recipe for this tart on a friend’s Pinterest board. Bacon AND caramelized onions? I’m in. But the “slab” of bacon, bacon fat and butter the original calls for seemed like overkill.
After substituting oven-baked turkey bacon and olive oil, the result still tastes decadent but is a little more calorie friendly — even with a toss of freshly grated Parmesan. And despite the 10-minute preparation/rest times, it comes together pretty quickly since you can mix the batter while the bacon’s in the oven and the onions are caramelizing.
To me, this dish is less reminiscent of a tart and more like a crustless quiche. It was delicious served as an entrée with a crispy green salad, but I imagine it would make a great appetizer, too. It also seems highly adaptable — I’m thinking a vegetarian version with the onions, sauteed mushrooms and roasted red peppers — or a Margherita version with chopped or sundried tomatoes, basil and mozzarella?
Recipe: Lighter Bacon and Onion Tart
8 slices turkey bacon (Oscar Mayer)
1 ½ tbsp. butter
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 large onion, halved, then sliced into thin crescents
½ tsp. seasoned salt
1 tsp. freshly ground pepper
1 ½ cups flour
½ tsp. garlic powder
1 ¼ cups milk (I used 1%)
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
¼ cup grated Parmesan
Heat oven to 400° F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and arrange bacon strips on foil. Cook the bacon 10 to 12 minutes, just until starting to brown. Heat 1 tbsp. olive oil and 1 tbsp. butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions, seasoned salt, and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly caramelized (about 10 minutes). Remove from heat and set aside.
Remove cooked bacon from oven, collect any fat into a 9″ × 11″ glass baking dish (not entirely necessary and there won’t be much, but I think it adds a little flavor) and transfer bacon to paper towels to drain. When cool enough to handle, cut into ¼” pieces. (I used kitchen scissors to mimic the matchsticks called for in the original but didn’t love the effect; next time I might try tearing it instead for a more rustic look.)
Increase oven temperature to 425° F. Add 1 tbsp. olive oil and the remaining ½ tbsp. butter to baking dish and place in oven. Heat for about 10 minutes (remove pan if butter starts to brown).
Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together flour, garlic powder and pepper. In a separate container (I used my large measuring cup), whisk milk, eggs and mustard until combined. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and stir until smooth. Let batter rest while pan is heating, about 10 minutes.
Remove hot baking dish from oven, pour in the batter, then sprinkle with the Parmesan, cooked turkey bacon and caramelized onions (I used a fork to help evenly distribute the onions). Return to oven and bake until puffed and golden brown, about 30 minutes. Enjoy!