Savory Supper Tarte Tatin

Enjoy the rich and luscious tastes of carmelized onions sautéed with pancetta, mushrooms deglazed with Marsala wine, sweet figs and nuts, covered with fresh herbs and cheese and crowned with a pastry crust. Add a spinach salad to complete the meal.


  • About 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), divided
  • 2-3 1/4-inch-thick slices pancetta, diced
  • 2 medium onions, cut into thin wedges with root attached
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 teaspoons light brown sugar
  • 1/2 pound crimini mushrooms, halved across horizontally
  • Freshly grated nutmeg
  • Marsala wine or dry sherry, for deglazing
  • 1 cup whole walnuts
  • 8 reconstituted figs or fresh Mission figs, if in season, quartered
  • Fresh sage leaves, thinly sliced, or fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 1/3 pound shredded Fontina Val D’Aosta or Gruyère or crumbled gorgonzola cheese
  • Parchment paper
  • 1 sheet good-quality frozen puff pastry dough, such as Dufour brand, defrosted


Pre-heat the oven to 400°F.

Heat about 1 tablespoon EVOO, one turn of the pan, in large skillet over medium heat. Add the pancetta and lightly brown. Add the onions and gently soften and sweeten, 20 minutes or so. Season with salt and pepper, sprinkle with sugar and stir a minute more. Transfer to a plate and reserve.

Add remaining the EVOO to pan and raise the heat to medium-high. Add the mushrooms and brown for 7-8 minutes. Season with nutmeg, salt and pepper and deglaze the pan with the Marsala. Stir in the walnuts, figs and reserved onions. Turn off the heat and gently arrange the ingredients on the bottom of a parchment paper-lined, straight-sided 9-inch cake pan. Press down lightly with a spatula to set in place. Top the onions, mushrooms and figs with sage or rosemary and cheese.

Cut a round of puff pastry slightly larger than the pan and set the dough on top of the ingredients. Tuck in the edges and bake for 25 minutes. Let stand for 5-10 minutes more, then invert on a serving dish. Cut into four large wedges and serve with a spinach salad topped with a grainy Dijon and honey vinaigrette alongside.

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