Rustic Goat Cheese Tart with Figs

Been spending the summer back East in Michigan. On the lake. A real lake- no dam at the end. Just crystal clear spring fed water. Surrounded by trees and hills and history. There aren’t many places that are dearer to me. Reminds me of my mom and brothers swimming across to Frog Island; letting the minnows nibble our toes. Catching pollywogs on the other side, playing fort in the middle. Then swimming back to the cabin for lunch.

So in that spirit of simplicity and quality i give you a recipe/no recipe. You can morph this to suit what you have on hand- this includes lemon and fig; you can just as easily substitute blueberry jam and lose the rosemary. Or make it more savory- include chopped prosciutto, a swirl of pesto and top with pinenuts.

Beauty Shot:

Wind River Range and Freemont Lake

Rustic Goat Cheese Tart with Figs


1 Sheet Puff Pastry thawed

5 T Fig Jam ( I like Dalmatia Fig Spread Original)

7 Ounces Goat Cheese, plain at room temperature

8 T Heavy Cream

Zest of lemon

Juice from one Lemon

1/4 C or so, Toasted Walnuts

Rough Chopped Rosemary to taste (couple of tablespoons typically)

Salt and Pepper

Fresh Black Mission Figs for garnish, split into quarters

Fresh Rosemary sprigs for garnish

Putting it Together:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Remove thawed Puff Pastry from refrigerator and let sit at room temp for at least 30 minutes. Lightly dust baking sheet with flour. Roll out sheet to slightly larger rectangle. Vertically, cut 1″ from either side. Cut horizontal strip of 1″ from top and bottom.

While pastry sits, make the goat cheese mixture; combine the room temp goat cheese, zest, lemon juice and cream into bowl. Note- this is messy. Have tried by hand, with spoon. Seriously, use a food processor. Scraping often till well combined.

Place half of cheese mix into center of puff pastry. Smoosh around till pretty well spread. Doesn’t have to be perfect. Top with fig jam. Again, perfection is not the goal. Top with remaining goat cheese.

Brush the long strips with water on one side and place watered side down to meld the two sides together. Lightly press to adhere. Repeat brushing each remaining strip with water to make a “frame”.

Top with rough chopped rosemary. Top with walnuts. Place into oven for 15-17 minutes. But watch closely, do not want to burn.

Remove when pastry has risen and is golden brown.

Move to platter and garnish with figs and rosemary sprigs.

A pie cutter works well for serving.