Pear & Onion Flatbread


When I want to whip-up something deliciously informal, this vibrant pear and onion flatbread is my go-to appetizer. With a crisp crust and a chewy center, it’s casual enough to eat out-of-hand at the kitchen counter but special enough to serve with cutlery and linen.

It’s hard to go wrong with a topping of caramelized pears, tangy goat cheese and red onions cooked meltingly soft. Drizzled with honey and a splash of red wine vinegar, the onions take on a sweet-tart finish so tasty you’ll want to eat them straight from the pan. Topped with peppery arugula and toasted nuts, this flavour combination is irresistible.

Pear & Onion Flatbread

Makes 3


1 tsp quick-rise instant yeast
1 cup lukewarm water
11/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp granulated sugar
1 tsp table salt


1/2 cup chopped toasted nuts—pecans, walnuts or pistachios (if using pistachios, no need to toast or chop)


■ 4 Tbsp vegetable or olive oil, divided, plus more to brush the dough
■ 2 red onions, thinly sliced
■ Kosher salt
■ 1 Tbsp honey
■ 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar, divided
■ 2 firm but ripe pears, cored and sliced about ½ inch thick (no need to remove the skin)
■ 1/2 cup goat cheese, about 5 oz, room temperature
■ 3/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
■ 1 cup grated Gruyère cheese, about 3 oz
■ 3 cups arugula, about 3 oz

*If the goat cheese is too firm to spread easily, place it in the microwave for a few seconds until soft.

Special Equipment

■ Pizza stone (if you don’t have one, use a heavy baking tray)


Combine the yeast and water in a small bowl and stir to combine. In a medium bowl, mix together the dry ingredients.

Pour the liquid over the dry ingredients and mix with a fork or spatula. If the mixture appears too dry, add just enough water (by the teaspoon) to make the dough come together.

Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth, about 1-2 minutes. Transfer to a lightly oiled bowl, cover, and rest in a warm, draft-free area for about an hour.


Heat 2 Tbsp oil in the large, non-stick skillet, add the onions, and toss with a wooden spoon or tongsto coat in oil. (This will seem like a lot of onions, but they will shrink as they cook.) Add a tsp koshersalt and cook over medium heat until the onions are soft and starting to brown around the edges,about 10 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent burning. Add the honey and 1 Tbsp red wine vinegarand toss to combine. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

Heat 1 Tbsp oil in the same pan and add the sliced pears in a single layer. Cook over medium tomedium-high heat until the pears are just brown around the edges, about 8 minutes, turningoccasionally to brown evenly and soften.

Preheat a pizza stone or heavy-bottomed baking tray in a 450°F oven. The pizza stone must beplaced in a cold oven, otherwise it can crack.

Putting It All Together

Divide the dough into 3 equal portions (it will have risen and will deflate as you shape it). Roll eachonto a sheet of parchment dusted with flour and shape into ovals, about 13 inches long by 5. incheswide and 1/4 inch (6 cm) thick.

Distribute the ingredients evenly among the three flatbreads, leaving a one-inch border. Layer as follows:
• Goat cheese (reserving a small portion for the top layer as well)
• Crushed red pepper flakes
• Gruyère cheese
• Cooked red onions
• Cooked sliced pears

Brush the border of each flatbread with a bit of oil.

Using a pizza peel or flat-edged baking tray, transfer one or two flatbreads and the parchmentbeneath them onto the preheated pizza stone or tray. Bake for about 10 minutes or until theflatbreads are cooked through and crisp around the edges.

In a small cup, mix together 1 Tbsp oil, 1 Tbsp red wine vinegar, and a pinch of salt.

When ready to serve, toss the arugula with the oil/vinegar mixture. Top each flatbread with thedressed arugula, toasted nuts, reserved goat cheese, and a light pinch of kosher salt (or fleur de sel ifyou have it on hand).

Serve immediately.

Join The Discussion