I have been completely envious of Bea and all of the gorgeous tarts she’s been posting over the last few weeks. Each one is picture perfect shades of gold and butter. And, after indulging a bit in the lovely puffed pastry tart from Two Tartes, I decided it was time to make my own.
Somewhat obviously, there are two important things to a tart: the crust and what you put inside. I am a quite embarrassed to admit this, but I use the crust recipe that is on the can of Crisco. It nearly impossible to get it wrong, and the crusts turn out incredibly flakey and delicious every single time. Maybe next go around, I’ll try something else (feel free to send suggestions!).
For the filling, I just couldn’t decide which way to go. I had found these gorgeous spring onions on my last trip to the market and had picked up a lovely goat cheese. But, I also had some cilantro pesto, some fresh cream cheese, a creamy fresh mozzarella and a mango, all that really needed to get used soon. And, so I decided to make them all. One pan, 4 different kinds of tarts!
For these tarts, start with your choice of crust recipes. Cut into small circles and roll out a bit more. Line each cup of a muffin tin with a piece of crust. Don’t make these too neat… a fold here and there will make for a much more beautiful tart. Fill as desired. I made 3 each of the four different fillings below. Cook at 375F for about 15 minutes or until golden brown. Allow to cool slightly before eating. I wish I could tell you which was my favorite, but they were all so different it is hard to say.
Caramelized Spring Onion and Goat Cheese
In a small skillet, add the onion, sliced into rings, with some butter and olive oil (about a 1/2 T of each per onion). Place over the lowest possible heat for about an hour stirring every 5 minutes or so. Once soft, raise heat to medium to brown, stirring constantly. Do not overcook! The onions should be a caramel color, not dark brown as they will have more time cooking in the oven.
Crumble some goat cheese (the stronger the better to balance the onion) into the bottom of the tart crust. Top with the caramelized onion.
Cucumber, Cream Cheese and Chive
Slice a cucumber into thin discs, and line the bottom of the tart crust with two to four slices. Sprinkle with a little salt. Top with about a tablespoon of fresh cream cheese. Sprinkle with finely chopped chives after baking.
Pesto and Fresh Mozzarella
Fill the tart crust almost halfway with your choice of pesto (check out these pestos which look delicious!). Top with a scoop of fresh mozzarella. If desired, add a bit more mozzarella after cooking.
Thinly slice mango, and fill the tart crust with the slices. Combine some sugar, cinnamon and ginger in a small bowl. Sprinkle mango with just a little of the sugar mixture. Top with freshly whipped cream when cool.