When I was a web producer at FineCooking.com, I thought about Jill Silverman Hough’s Honeyed Fig and Goat Cheese Tart from its development phase in the test kitchen all the way through its debut in the magazine and on the web. I’ve made it many, many times since then, only never exactly how Jill wrote it.
See, goat cheese is a deal breaker for me. I know a lot of people love it, but for me, for these taste buds, goat cheese ruins everything. In internet speak, I cannot even. Just no.
But Jill’s tart is drop-dead gorgeous and it uses frozen puff pastry, so it calls to me. Pretty regularly, in fact. Her recipe feeds 6-8 as an appetizer, but in my experience, as a dessert, the recipe only stretches to feed 8 if you’re planning on a scoop of ice cream to go along with somewhat smaller pieces than my family deems acceptable for dessert. (Maybe it’s us?)
On a recent Faith Middleton Food Schmooze® celebrating berries, I talked about my favorite way to use frozen puff pastry to make a quick dessert that looks rustic and beautiful, but takes less than an hour to pull together, thanks to that puff pastry dough. I love figs (borrowing from Jill’s recipe) but you can use peaches, too, and absolutely any berry you want. Figs and raspberries are one of my favorite combos, so there you go.
|6 people (with a scoop of ice cream)|
Play with this recipe to make it your own (I did). Add some lemon juice to the filling, if the zest isn’t sweet-tart enough for you. Or go with a lime filling/blueberry combination. Add ginger to the filling and use blackberries and peach slices for your fruit. The pastry is the base—a blank canvas—the rest is up to you. Frozen puff pastry dough often comes two sheets to a box. Use them up! Make one sweet tart and one savory (see recipe notes for Faith’s savory option).
- flour for dusting your parchment
- 1 sheet frozen puff pastry dough thawed
- 1 teaspoon Turbinado sugar
- egg wash for brushing on edges
- 4 ounces mascarpone cheese
- 2 tablespoons honey more if you want the filling sweeter, and more for drizzling
- zest of one lemon
- 3 fresh figs stemmed and sliced
- 1/3 cup fresh raspberries whole or sliced in half
- Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 475°F.
- Dust parchment with flour. Unfold and place sheet of puff pastry dough on the floured surface. Roll out the puff pastry dough to make a 10-inch square. Fold over edges to make a 3/4-inch boarder. Prick the dough all over with a fork. Brush the edges with egg wash. Sprinkle edges with sugar. Bake for 8-10 minutes until the pastry starts getting golden.
- While the pastry is in the oven, add mascarpone cheese, honey, and zest to a bowl. Mix to combine.
- Once your pastry is golden, take it out of the oven. Spoon your cheese and honey mixture on to the center of the puff pastry and spread your filling out to cover the square. Top with sliced figs, then the raspberries. Bake for another 7-8 minutes, or until the edges are nice and golden (check on it after 5 minutes!).
- Once out of the oven, drizzle a little more honey over the warm tart. Let it set up for 10-15 minutes before cutting into slices.
Faith had the great idea of taking this in a savory direction. If you do, by all means, sub in goat cheese for the mascarpone, sub in herbs for the lemon zest in the filling, add slices of prosciutto. Skip the honey and drizzle balsamic over the top. Imagine how good a quick summer tomato tart would be! Salt, all the way around, of course.
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