I was born in the Kurpfalz region of Germnany which roughly is located between Frankurt and Karlsruhe along the Rhine river. A traditional late summer treat of this region is onion pie served with Federweisser. It is grape harvest season, and vintners sell partly fermented wine which is unfiltered and still sparkling.
Onion pie is related to Quiche Lorraine and Tarte Flambée, and there are also other similar baked goods in other regions of South Germany. The common denominator is dough topped with onions, bacon (or speck) and cream and/or eggs.
The special thing about onion pie is that onions play a dominating role whereas in other recipes the different ingredients are more balanced. The onions are pre-cooked so they lose their sharpness and reveal their natural sugar content which makes the combination with Federweisser such a perfect match.
Some prefer to use yeast dough for their onion pie, I like to use shortcrust pastry.
- 1 kg large onions
- 250 g all purpose flour
- 125 + 30 g butter, unchilled
- 150 g Specckwürfel
- 150 g diced bacon or speck
- 250 ml liquid cream
- Nutmeg, salt and pepper
- Preparation: 40 minutes
- Baking: 45 minutes
Mix flour, butter and one egg in a bowl and add a pinch of salt. Knead thoroughly for a few minutes until you get a firm and homogenous dough. Shape into a ball, wrap into cling film and refrigerate for 30 to 60 minutes.
Cut the onions into thin slices. Heat 30 g butter in a large skillet and cook the onions on meduim heat until they are soft and translucent. Stir often and separate the individual onion rings from the slices. Set aside. In a small skillet fry the diced bacon until just turning brown. Mix the bacon with the onions.
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Mix cream and the remaining eggs in a small bowl and season strongly with salt, pepper and nutmeg.
Spread the dough in a pie or quiche mould and shape a rim. Spread the onion and bacon mixture evenly on the dough, then pour the egg and cream mixture over the onions.
Bake in the oven for about 45 minutes, lowering the temperature to 180 degrees after 10 minutes.
Federweisser is the perfect match for onion pie but you may not be able to find it. Instead a fruity white wine that is not too dry should be a viable alternative.