Tarte flambée is an Alsatian dish, speciality of the Alsace region and neighbouring areas (northeast France, south Germany), composed of bread dough rolled out very thinly in the shape of a rectangle (Traditionally) or circle, which is covered with fromage blanc or crème fraîche, thinly sliced onions and lardons. It is one of the most famous specialties of the region.
Depending on the region, this dish can be called Flammekueche, Flàmmeküeche Flàmmaküacha or Flammekuechle in Alsatian, Flammkuche in Lorraine Franconian, Flammkuchen in German, which means "flame cake", or in French tarte flambée, which translates as "pie baked in the flames." Contrary to what the direct translation would suggest, tarte flambée may or may not be usually flambéed, but cooked in a wood-fire oven. There are many variations of the original recipe, in terms of the garniture. The standard variations are:
Legend says that the creators of this dish could have been Alemannic-German-speaking farmers from Alsace, Baden or the Palatinate who used to bake bread once a week or every other week. In fact, the tarte flambée was originally a homemade dish which did not make its urban restaurant debut until the "pizza craze" of the 1960s. A tarte flambée would be used to test the heat of their wood-fired ovens. At the peak of its temperature, the oven would also have the ideal conditions in which to bake a tarte flambée. The embers would be pushed aside to make room for the tarte in the middle of the oven, and the intense heat would be able to bake it in 1 or 2 minutes. The crust that forms the border of the tarte flambée would be nearly burned by the flames. The result resembles a thin pizza.
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