Fontina, Pear, and Caramelized Onion Galette

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Makes 2 small galettes
Credit: Alexandra’s Kitchen
Originally from January 2014 on my old  blog

This was part 2 out of 3 for the Christmas dinner I made last week, first part being the main dish (an amazing, 8 pound roast beef, which I just posted the recipe for) and the third part being the vegetable (just a simple broccoli dish, which I will be posting next). It really just completed the whole meal, and it was probably my favorite of the night (even above the roast beef! How crazy is that?)

This recipe does take a considerable amount of work, but not nearly as much as it LOOKS like it does. I mean, look how beautiful? Almost too pretty to eat. But, nothing is TOO pretty to eat, of course, especially this. The combination of the crumbly, slightly sweet crust and buttery caramelized onions with the tender roasted pears and melted, creamy cheese just makes for perfection.

To make juggling 3 dishes at once easier, I assembled the tarts a little less than 2 hours before baking them and just refrigerated them until it was time to bake.

Ingredients:

For the cornmeal dough:
~9 tablespoons unsalted butter
~1 ¼ cups flour
~1/3 cup medium or fine grind yellow cornmeal
~1 teaspoon sugar
~1 ¼ teaspoons salt
~¼ cup ice-cold water

For the caramelized onions:
~2 tablespoons butter
~4 cups onion slices (from about 3 to 4 small to medium onions)
~Pinch of salt
~½ teaspoon red wine, white wine or white balsamic vinegar (optional)

For the galettes:
~2 cups (8 ounces) Wisconsin Fontina Cheese, grated (I couldn’t find fontina so I used a combination of Monterrey jack and Swiss cheese instead)
~¼ teaspoon salt
~1 tablespoon fresh thyme, finely chopped
~1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, finely chopped
~¼ teaspoon pepper, freshly cracked
~2 small rounds cornmeal galette dough
~1 cup caramelized onions
~2 pears, thinly sliced
~1 egg yolk mixed with 1 teaspoon milk or cream

For Cornmeal Dough:
Cut butter into small cubes and place in freezer for approximately 5 minutes.

In food processor, pulse flour, cornmeal, sugar and salt until blended. Add butter and pulse until butter is size of small peas. Add ice water. Pulse at 1-second intervals until dough starts to form, about 10 seconds total. Dough should hold together when pinched.

Scoop half of dough onto center of sheet of plastic wrap. Wrap, forming dough into ball and pressing into disk: chill. Repeat with remaining dough. Refrigerate 30 minutes to an hour, if possible.

For Caramelized Onions:
Heat butter over medium heat in large sauté pan. Add onions with pinch of salt. Cook, covered, 15 minutes.

Remove cover, stir and increase heat slightly. Continue to cook another 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to reduce sticking. Cook an additional 10 to 15 minutes, stirring more frequently until onions have turned a nice deep brown.

Add vinegar, turn off heat and scrape bottom of pan with wooden spoon or spatula to remove any browned bits. Remove pan from heat and transfer onions to large bowl to cool.

For Galettes:
Preheat oven to 375ºF. In small bowl, combine Fontina, salt, thyme, rosemary and pepper. Set aside.

Line baking sheet with parchment paper. On lightly floured work surface, roll each dough round into 8- to 10-inch circle. Use flour as needed to prevent sticking and pat dough together if it crumbles. Fold each round into quarters and transfer to prepared baking pan.

Unfold one galette round and top with layer of caramelized onions, leaving 2-inch border exposed. Cover onions with layer of pears. Top with layer of herb-Fontina mixture. Lift edges of dough and fold them inward, pleating as you go, to form folded-over border, pinching together any tears. Brush egg-yolk mixture over exposed crust. Repeat assembly with remaining galette. Chill assembled galettes 15 minutes, or up to 3 hours before baking.

Bake until crust has browned and Fontina has melted, 35 to 45 minutes. Carefully slide t galettes off parchment and onto cooling rack. Cool 10 minutes before serving.

Happy dining!!

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