Our family tradition for some time now has been that we have a heavy horderve and dessert party Christmas Eve. Then Christmas night we have a family meal together at our house. The informal atmosphere seems to work well when you’ve got a pack of impatient children begging to open gifts.
A formal meal was more than the little dears could handle. As the adults had their desserts and coffee, the children after asking for the one hundredth time “are y’all almost done eating” would wind up in a puddle of package opening anticipation. That usually ended up in some idle threats on the parts of their parents……I mean I’m think of myself as strict, but even I couldn’t lay down the law on Christmas Eve.
We figured out as long as we have a lot of kid friendly food, and keep them in close proximity of the gifts, things run much smoother. The walking and talking of the adults seems to have a more positive effect on them. I think the sit down meal drove them crazy because, “how could adults just sit there, when there are so many gifts just waiting to be opened.”
This year one of the appetizers I’m making is this savory tart. It’s so easy and can be made ahead of time and assembled just when you need it. If you wanted to you could cook the bacon and onion ahead of time and refrigerate. Mix the cheese mixture and put in the fridge. They could stay in the fridge for up to 4 days until you needed them.
chop and fry about 1/3 of a pound of bacon
I’ve got 1 pound of bacon in this picture because that same evening I made homemade pizza with bacon and pine-apple
chop one medium onion into small pieces
remove the crisp bacon from the pan and put it aside
leave about 1 tablespoon of bacon grease in the pan
add you onions and about 1 tablespoon of butter
I’ve got 2 onions cooking in this picture because I’m going to use 1 on the pizza
cook the onions until they are tender and the natural sugar in them begins to carmelize, then take them off the heat
add 1 cup of whole milk ricotta cheese to a mixing bowl
you can just mix it by hand, no need to mess up the big standing mixer
add 1 egg yolk
next add 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
then 1/2 teaspoon pepper
next add 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme or 1 teaspoon fresh chopped thyme
then add 1/4 cup of grated parmesan cheese
mix it well with a spoon
thinly slice 5 or 6 grape tomatoes
grab a tart pan if you have one, if not a pie pan will do very well
gently coax a Pillsbury pie crust into the crevices of the tart pan
then spoon in your cheesy mixture
spread it out evenly with the back of the spoon
sprinkle on a layer of those wonderful carmelized onions
followed by a layer of bacon
and lastly a few shavings of parmesan cheese on top
run it into a preheated oven at 350′ for 45 minutes
it’s surprisingly delicate tasting
the wanna be country girl – Caroline
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