Hunter by name and trade, Michael Hunter is an outdoorsman, forager and hunter. Born and raised on a Caledon horse farm, Hunter’s dream was to own a restaurant that would combine his love for food with a passion and respect for local ingredients.
Formerly of Sassafraz, Luma, Scarpetta, and Reds Wine Tavern, he has used his experience in the outdoors to explore his culinary creativity, becoming chef and co-owner of Antler Kitchen and Bar. Antler is strongly rooted in regional food culture—pure, fresh and seasonal. It embodies local flavour and spirit, offering contemporary dishes with an emphasis on wild food and farm-fresh ingredients that are always sourced locally.
Quick Puff Instructions
Using a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, crumble butter into flour leaving large, pea-sized chunks of butter.
Add the salt and water, and mix until the dough just comes together (1-2 minutes).
Press dough into a 2-inch thick rectangle and wrap in parchment paper or plastic wrap. Rest 10 minutes.
Roll out to half-inch thick and fold into three, much like you would fold a letter into an envelope. Roll out to .-inch again and repeat for a total of 3 times or 3 'letter folds'.
Chef's Tip: Quick puff pastry does not require normal resting period between folding like the classic “puff pastry”, hence the name.
Mushroom Filling Instructions
Heat a medium-sized pot with the olive oil and melt 1 tbsp butter on medium high heat.
Add the thinly sliced onion and cover. Stir every minute or two until the onion becomes soft and translucent.
Turn the heat to high and add the sugar, stirring more frequently so the onions don’t burn but the sugar caramelizes. When the onions look caramel in colour, add the brandy, then cook off the alcohol and reduce until almost dry.
With this recipe you can make one large tart or several small ones. Cut the dough to fit the top of your tart ring mold or pan and reserve.
Brush the bottom of the tart pan with butter and oil and add the sliced raw mushrooms. Season with a pinch of salt, pepper and fresh thyme leaves. Add the caramelized onions and top with the puff pastry. Bake at 400°F (205°C) for 20-30 minutes or until the pastry has visibly risen and is dark caramel in colour. You want to ensure the pastry is cooked all the way through, so gently lift the side of the pastry to see the underside is cooked.
Once baked, invert the tart, flipping the pan so the pastry is on the bottom.
Serve warm and garnish with grated hard cheese like an aged Ontario Gouda or extra old Ontario cheddar.