I’m rather partial to goat’s cheese. The creamy taste, the velvety texture and the gooey inside. Sadly in Korea its not all that easy to come by. In fact I don’t think I have bought any since I have been here. Luckily I visited Hong Kong last week and picked some up. I pondered what to make and decided I would use up the pastry I had sitting in the freezer and would make some tarts. You just cant beat a goats cheese tart. The pastry and cheese are such a winning combination. I always choose this if it’s on a menu.
1/2 a round of goats cheese (about 100g, I think they sell in it in Shinsegae department store)
8 squares of puff pastry. ( I found mine at the foreign food mart in Itaewon in the freezer section)
250g of spinach
4 rashers of bacon(optional)
150ml of tomato sauce (I always keep a jar of homemade in the fridge.)
1 beaten egg
2 tablespoon of onion jam (you can find mine at the Pinoy mart)
A knob of butter
If using the bacon cook on high in an oven until its very crispy, I had some to use up, which is why I added it, but I think it worked rather well. Finely chop the spinach and then wilt in a pan in a knob of butter. Once the spinach has wilted take the pan off the heat and crumble in the goats cheese and bacon. Grate in some fresh parmesan and stir well. Add in in a couple of tablespoons of onion jam and tomato sauce (homemade or store bought).
To make my tomato sauce finely chop an onion and about 5 cloves of garlic. Fry off in a little olive oil until softened. Throw the onions into a blender along with 5-6 tomatoes or a can of tomatoes. If tomatoes are cheap I use fresh, in the winter its usually canned. Add a tablespoon of mixed herbs and blend. Pour the sauce into a saucepan and cook for about 10 minutes. I usually add a tablespoon of tomato ketchup at this point too, to sweeten it up. I also add glug or two of red wine if I have some open. I change the sauce slightly depending on what I’m making but this is a basic I would use for lots of things.
Take the pastry square and make 4 slices down the middle of two of the pieces being careful not to cut through to the end. Put a few tablespoons of the goats cheese spinach mixture into the piddle of the uncut pastry square leaving a the edges free. Brush the edges with the beaten egg then place the scored piece on top. Press down the edges to make sure it’s joined together. Then brush the beaten egg over the top. Bake in an oven at about 180 degrees celcius for about 15- 20 minutes or until the pastry has cooked through. Be careful to check the bottom layer as its easy to have this under cooked. If you notice mine on the picture it is a little underdone and I had to put them back in the oven for another 5 minutes. If the tops are getting too brown cover the tarts with foil. Enjoy on their own or with a side salad. Voilà easy goats cheese tarts, a food I never though I would enjoy in Korea.