An Onion Tart, known as Zweibelkuchen (onion cake) in its German birthplace, is always popular in the fall and winter. Alluding to the Reese's candy metaphor, what if a quiche collided with a pizza? Or what if a quiche and a pizza got married and had a baby? Or... well you get the idea. Zweibelkuchen shares genes with both a quiche and a pizza but is just different enough to be interesting. Bacon and sour cream and caraway seeds marry (A menage a trois?) on a nice onion-laden crust and form a delicious tart rendering a delectable luncheon treat, or a nice snack on a cool windy afternoon. Aw shucks, it would be welcome 'most any old time.
Zweibelkuchen is like a German cousin of the Gallic Pissaldiere, only the toppings above the main event, the onions, are different.
Zweibelkuchen is most often made with a yeast dough but can be made with pie pastry. You could even make the filling and use store- bought pastry. There was a lady who made this tart with frozen bread dough from the market. If you have a Kitchenaid or a Cuisinart, a yeast dough is easy to make, should you be so inclined. Use whatever crust you fancy. Early TV star Molly Goldberg used a prepared pie pastry for her Jake's Zweibelkuchen, so you certainly can too. Pre-heat oven to 450F/225C.
Zweibelkuchen Serves 6
2 lbs onions, peeled cut into half and sliced into half-ringsFour slices of bacon, diced
16 oz/473 ml sour cream
¼ teaspoon black pepper1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon caraway seeds
Fry the bacon but do not brown it, using a large skillet or a pot over medium heat.
Add the onions to the bacon and fry, stirring from time to time, until the onions are transparent, and soft, but not caramelized. This will take about 15 minutes. OR: You could put the bacon and onion mixture in a crockpot (sprayed with cooking spray) and leave untended for 5-8 hours. Slow cook them overnight if you wish.
In a separate bowl, mix the sour cream, eggs, pepper and nutmeg.
¾ teaspoon baking yeast 1 cup warm milk½ teaspoon sugar
3 cups flour
4 tablespoons butter
½ teaspoon salt
Dissolve the yeast in the lukewarm milk, add the sugar and a dash of the flour, stir, cover and keep in a warm place for ten minutes.
Add this and the remaining dough ingredients to your dough-hook mixer or food processor or bench board. and mix .Knead about ten minutes by hand, 5 minutes by dough-hook or one minute in food processor.
Cover and keep in a warm place for 45 minutes to let the dough rise.
Roll the dough out and place into a flat, large roasting pan. Two separate 9 inch square pans are good too. Just divide the dough in half. You want a ridge on the sides to provide a wall to hold the filling. The ridge should be about 1/2 inch high, then pour the onion and bacon mixture over the dough and spread it out to cover evenly. Optionally, you could sprinkle a little grated Swiss cheese over this if you like.
Pour the egg-sour cream mixture over the top, sprinkle the caraway seeds evenly and put it in the oven for 30-40 minutes, at which time it should be a lovely golden brown.
If you like pizza and/or quiche/pissaldiere and you know your onions, Zweibelkuchen is a pleasant, tasty diversion. Enjoy.