Thursday, May 22, 2008

Cheese Tart Recipe from Baetje Farms

Following is a recipe forwarded to Madame Chouteau by Veronica Beatje from Baetje Farms, source of the excellent goat cheese products found at the Soulard Farmers' Market:

Ingredients for crust:
1/4 cup Oat Flour from Kimker Hill Farm plus 1 3/4 cup 10 Grain Flour from Kimker Hill Farm-or 2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp sugar
1 1/2 sticks chilled butter, cut in 1/2" pieces
4 T shortening
1/2 cup iced water, plus more as needed

Mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Place in a 2 qt. or larger food processor with the slicing blade on. Pulse once or twice to smooth out the dry ingredients. Add the butter and shortening and pulse 4-5 times, until the flour mixture starts to pull together into small pearls. Turn the blade on and add the water in one fell swoop, stopping the blade just after and pulsing another 5-10 times until the dough just starts to come together around the blade. Do not overmix!

Pull the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and quickly form into a ball, working fast to stop the butter from melting due to heat from your hands. Wrap tightly in plastic and chill for at least 2 hours and up to a day in the refrigerator. The dough will freeze for quite some time if carefully wrapped.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and roll out on a lightly floured surface to just larger than 9". Carefully transfer the dough to an 8" tart pan rubbed with butter. Gently press the dough into the edge of the pan, forming the bottom and sides of the tart. Place a piece of aluminum foil on the tart and fill with beans to keep the tart from puffing during baking. Bake on a sheet at 400 degrees for 10 minutes.

Remove the crust from the oven and carefully remove the aluminum foil and beans. Use a fork to prick the bottom of the crust in several spots, then return to the oven for another 8-10 minutes. Remove when center is firm and edges are just starting to brown.

For filling:
1/2 lb. bacon lardons - I used Greenwood Farms' smoked bacon
1/2 cup sliced fresh green onions, green and white parts
4 cloves minced garlic
4 cups fresh spinach, washed and dried
9 oz. Baetje Farm's "Coeur de la Creme" cheese (1 1/2 hearts)-substitute with your favorite chevre
2 T softened butter
3 T heavy cream
2 large eggs
pinch of Penzey's French Four Spice-substitute with fresh ground nutmeg
salt & pepper to taste

Heat a dash of olive oil in a large skillet and add the bacon. Stir over med-high heat until the bacon pieces are browned and crispy. Remove to paper towels with a slotted spoon. Pour off all but 1 T drippings. Stirring quickly, add the green onions and the garlic. Heat for 30 seconds until the onions start to open up, then add the spinach. Cover and remove from heat. Let the spinach wilt for 1 minute, then stir to begin mixing in the onions, garlic and oil. Cover again and wilt for 4 minutes. Stir again and let cool (preferably to room temperature but it can be a little warmer if you're rushed for time).

Mix the softened goat cheese, butter and cream with a fork until lightly blended. Beat the eggs in a separate bowl, then add to the cheese and mix well until smooth. Season with a pinch of Penzey's French Four Spice and salt and pepper to taste.

Fold the wilted spinach into the cream mixture. Scatter bacon pieces on the bottom of the cooled tart crust, then gently spoon in the cream mixture, smoothing with a spatula. Bake uncovered for 25-30 minutes, until center is light and puffy and the top is just starting to brown. A knife to the middle should come out clean.

Cool on wire rack for 10 minutes, then gently remove the sides of the tart pan. Cool to room temperature, then slide the tart off the bottom of the tart pan. Serve at room temperature or cold. Keeps for 3-5 days covered and refrigerated.

Recipe by Chris Freeland -
More local recipes at

1 comment:

Chris Freeland said...

I wrote this recipe for the Baetje's, glad to see it getting around! It was originally posted on my blog at