Happy Labor Day! I recently inherited a fantastic set of 50’s era glass cocktail plates and have been seeking any excuse, good or otherwise, to use them. A small gathering of friends lent itself as that excuse so I set myself to the happy task of developing a menu based around the individual compartments on the plates. (Sidenote: I don’t have pictures of the plates, but will, I hope, soon. They are too cool to go un-photographed!) I wanted to keep it vegetarian but also meat-eater friendly and this deeply flavored, savory goat cheese tart was just the ticket. Paired with a few other sides (and a few bottles of wine), it had just the right substance to make a nice, light yet satisfying meal. It made a pretty good breakfast, too. The onion jam is just a bonus; I was worried about there not being enough Umami flavor to the tart and the sweet/salty combo married sublimely with the creamy goat cheese.
Goat Cheese + Mushroom Tart with Potato Crust
FOR THE CRUST
- 3 medium red potatoes, or 1 large russett potato, shredded
- 1 tsp. fresh rosemary
- salt and pepper to taste
- cooking spray
FOR THE TART
- 1 1/2 cups goat cheese, at room temperature
- 2 cups chopped mushrooms
- 2 Tbs. olive oil
- 1 Tbs. fresh rosemary
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 1 whole egg, plus one yolk
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Spray a pie plate with cooking spray. Sprinkle the shredded potato with salt and pepper, toss together, then squeeze out the excess water. Press into the bottom of the pie plate to form a thin crust. Bake in preheated oven for 30-40 minutes or until golden brown and crisp. Remove from oven and set aside.
Meanwhile, heat olive oil in large pan over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and cook for a few minutes, then add the herbs and continue cooking until mushrooms are soft and almost dry. Stir together the goat cheese, cream, and eggs; season with salt and pepper to taste and the combine with the mushrooms.
Pour the cheese mixture into the potato crust and bake for 20-25 minutes or until the sides are set but the middle is still just wobbly. Remove from oven and let cool. Slice and serve warm or at room temperature.
*adapted from Mark Bittman
Caramelized Onion Jam
Makes 2 cups
- 4 pounds onions, halved and cut into slices
- 2 Tbs. olive oil
- Pinch of salt
- 3/4 cup port
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 tsp. dried rosemary
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a dutch oven over medium heat, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the sliced onions and salt, toss to combine, and place in oven, covered, for one hour. After one hour, uncover and stir. Partly cover and allow to cook for another hour, stirring every 30 minutes until onions are a deep golden color. Remove from oven and place on stove over medium heat. Add port, water, vinegar, sugar and rosemary and allow to simmer until desired thickness, stirring occasionally. A clearly defined path should show when you drag a spoon across the bottom of the pan.
Remove from heat and spoon into heat proof and tightly-lidded jars. Allow to cool to room temperature before sealing. Jam should keep for two weeks in the fridge.
*adapted from America’s Test Kitchen