Goats Cheese & Tomato Puff Pastry Tartelettes

On Friday this week I already knew I’d be using puff pastry for breakfast today and that I’d have some left over. I mentally scanned the contents of my fridge to see what I could make, and what I’d have to get on the way home. The goats cheese slices immediately caught my attention, but the rest I wasn’tΒ  so sure about.

What I did know was that I wanted to make tartelettes, but nothing sweet. Puff pastry, slice of goats cheese, tomatoes. Then I remembered a French recipe that incorporates fresh herbs in the dough, so I decided – taking the easy route, as usual… – to place a few herb leaves on the bottom of the tartelettes. The herb of my choice was tarragon, just because I found everything else so predictable and boring. However, the organic tarragon I got tasted of absolutely nothing, very disappointing. Decided to use it anyway for colour. I also wanted something between the pastry and the cheese, and plum chutney was the only savoury thing I had at hand, so I used that, albeit very sparingly. Just cocktail tomatoes seemed too boring for a topping, so I caramelised some onions and topped everything with a sprinkling of mixed nuts.

You’ll notice that I didn’t give any measurements in the recipe. That’s because really you can adapt this for any size of pie dish or tart tin you have. I used small individual tart tins.

Goats Cheese & Tomato Puff Pastry Tartelettes

puff pastry
handful of tarragon leaves
plum chutney (or any chutney of your choice)
goats cheese slices
cocktail tomatoes, halved
onions, finely chopped
light cane sugar
butter
handful mixed nuts, chopped
pinch of maple syrup

Line tart tin of your choice with the puff pastry (using cooking spray inside the tin, or baking parchment, depending on the quality of your tart tin). Prick pastry with a fork. Place tarragon leaves on top. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Heat some butter or oil in a frying pan, add onions and cook them over medium-high heat until they start to brown. You might need to reduce the heat along the way. Add a little sugar and keep cooking until onions are nicely browned and soft. [As I like to cut corners, especially time-wise, I used this method. If you want to do it properly – spending more like an hour – you’ll find a great recipe at Simply Recipes.]

Once the onions are done, get out your puff pastry lined tart tins, spread some chutney on bottom [I added only about 1 tsp – see pictures], then top with sliced goats cheese. Top with the halved cocktail tomatoes, cut side up. Top those with caramelised onions, but make an effort to distribute them properly over the tomatoes, otherwise you’ll end up with a few heaps of onions here and there – they should be sort of placed strategically. Sprinkle with the chopped nuts [I actually ended up mixing the onions and the nuts before adding them.] I made a last minute decision to add some maple syrup, but only a tiny amount, using the pinch measuring spoon from my set. Bake at 165Β°C / 325Β°F for 20 – 25 minutes. [If you use a large tin, baking time will be longer, approximately 35 minutes.] Serve with a leave salad.

Would I make this again? Anytime! The combination of flavours is absolutely delicious. You can taste a hint of chutney, you can make out the cheese [BTW, the one I used happened to be lactose free, and the slices were thin which was really good], the tart tomatoes [because let’s face it – there’s no way to get sweet ones during winter in Germany] are well balanced by the combination of slightly sweetened onions and maple syrup. All in all, a success, and something you can make for a light-ish lunch.

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