A not really very close relative of Tarte Tatin - I think it's fair to say that you'd get some very odd looks if you served this as a desert.

You will need:
One solid metal frying pan
A handful of shallots
A splash of red wine
A splash of Balsamic vinegar
A sprinkling of brown sugar
Some puff pastry
A few Cherry Tomatoes
Fresh Basil

Shallots are small irksome little blighters, but there's really no substituting them for this recipe. To make life easier for yourself, let the shallots sit in a jug of freshly boiled water for ten minutes or so prior to using them.

The shallots need to be topped and tailed, and their outer skins removed, however for the sake of presentation, you should try to keep them in one piece as far as possible. Fry the shallots in good quality olive oil, over a medium heat. Stir as infrequently as possible: you need to cook them all over, but don't want them to break-up.

Once the shallots have begun to soften, pour over a drizzling of Balsamic Vinegar, and about a glass of wine. Bring this to boil, then reduce the heat. Sprinkle over a teaspoon of brown sugar, and continue to cook gently until the sauce has reduced and caramelised. The sauce should be brown and sticky, but not burnt - as soon as this happens throw in a few tomatoes and the freshly shredded basil leaves - at this point, you ideally want just one layer of shallots/tomatoes.

Whilst the sauce is reducing, you should roll out the puff pastry to 1/8th inch thickness. Once your shallot sauce concoction is ready, place the pastry over the pan and trim down the edges. The pastry should then be tucked around the shallots at the side of the pan, forming a tight blanket over them.

Put the frying pan into a hot oven (approx 220C). Cook unitl the pastry has risen and turned a nice golden colour. To serve, hold a plate over the pastry, a quickly tip over, leaving you with nice tasty shallots, slightly burst tomatoes, on a pastry base.

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