Zwiebelkuchen is a traditional German pie which is mostly known in the wine regions and usually eaten during the grape harvest. As the name implies – ‘Zwiebel’ means ‘onion’ – its main ingredient is onions. The pie mostly comes in a square or round baking tray and is commonly made on the basis of yeast dough or – more similar to Quiche Lorraine – with shortpastry.
Especially in Fall during the wine festival season, Zwiebelkuchen pops up everywhere across the German wine regions. Especially in Baden, along the rivers of Rhine, Mosel, Saar and Nahe, in Pfalz as well as in Franken. Commercially produced onion pie is nowadays also available in many bakeries and restaurants in other regions of Germany during that season.
Zwiebelkuchen can be served warm or cold and is preferably eaten together with the famous new wine called Federweißer. Extremely delicious – but if you have a sensitive stomach, you better beware of this devilish combination. In the end, it is basically a whole bucket of onions with semi-fermented grape juice!
If you are brave enough, try this bloaty deliciousness with our simple and authentic recipe:
- For the dough:
- 200 g flour
- 1 tea spoon of salt
- 10 g yeast
- 125 ml lukewarm water
- 1 tbsp oil
- For the filling:
- 1 kg of onions
- 250 g of bacon
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup of sour cream
- 1 cup of quark
- 1 cup of creme
- 2 tbsp flour
- Salt, pepper
- Prepare the dough from 200 g of flour, yeast and half of the water. Sprinkle some flour over it and let it rest at a warm spot until it produces cracks.
- Now mix the dough with the rest of the water and oil and knead it until you get a smooth mass. Let it rest again until the volume of the dough has doubled and knead again.
- Prepare the baking tray with some oil or butter and besprinkle with flour. Preheat the oven at 200°C.
- Spread the dough in the baking tray and press it up on the sides. Puncture it several times with a fork.
- Cut the onions into thin slices and the bacon into very fine, small cubes.
- Braise the bacon cubes until they turn slightly brown, then add the onions and fry everything until the onions get soft and glassy.
- Now pour the onion-bacon mix into the liquid made from sour cream, quark, creme, eggs and 50 g of flour and season it with salt and pepper.
- Spread the onion mixture on the dough and bake it at 200°C for approx. 60 minutes.
- Finally strew some caraway onto the pie if you like.
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Photos by Hardo Müller