Goat Cheese, Apple and Honey Tarts
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Maybe you went apple picking and now you don’t know what to do with all three bushels. (Hey, you got carried away. It happens.) Or maybe you are throwing an impromptu gathering and want an easy appetizer to serve your friends. That’s what these goat cheese, apple and honey tarts—from Apple: Recipes from the Orchard by James Rich—are for.
“It’s best to use a sweet apple for this recipe to complement the tanginess of the cheese,” Rich writes, “so try a Braeburn or Royal Gala instead of Granny Smith. You can either bake this as individual tarts—as I have done—or as one large tart, in which case just roll out the puff pastry into a rectangle.”
After the tarts come out of the oven all golden brown and crisp, don’t wait long to drizzle on some honey and serve them. They’re best eaten while still warm, or toasted and reheated on the second day…if you have any left.
Recipes excerpted with permission from Apple by James Rich, published by Hardie Grant Books, September 2019.
5 tablespoons (75g) unsalted butter
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
½ sprig of rosemary, leaves removed and finely chopped
2 sheets frozen puff pastry, thawed
All-purpose flour, as needed for dusting
1 egg, beaten
7 ounces (200g) goat cheese
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 crisp, sweet “eating” apples, such as Braeburn or Gala—peeled, cored and sliced
Pinch of ground allspice
4 tablespoons honey
Micro purple basil, to garnish (optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 375ºF and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Heat a skillet over medium heat and melt half the butter. Add the onion and rosemary, and sauté until the onion begins to brown, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.
3. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the puff-pastry sheets to about ¼ inch thick. Using a 4-inch round cookie cutter, cut out 20 rounds. Place 10 rounds on the prepared baking sheet and prick all over with a fork.
4. Make rings by cutting smaller rounds from the remaining 10 pieces of pastry using a slightly smaller (about 3½ inches) round cookie cutter. Remove the centers and save for another recipe. Brush the rounds on the baking sheet with the beaten egg and then place a pastry ring on each one. Chill in the freezer for 15 minutes.
5. To make the cheese topping, put the goat cheese, lemon juice and some salt and pepper into a bowl; mix with a fork. Avoid overmixing, as you want the cheese to be crumbly.
6. Spoon about 1 tablespoon of the cheese mixture onto each piece of pastry, then top with the sliced apple, overlapping slightly.
7. Melt the remaining butter and brush it over the tarts. Top with the allspice. Bake in the oven until golden brown, 25 to 30 minutes. When the tarts are done, drizzle with the honey and micro purple basil, if using, while still warm.