This is the most insanely flaky, buttery dough I think I’ve ever made. When it bakes up, the pastry puffs to reveal layer upon gorgeous, crispy layer and it’s filled with a rich tanginess from the creme fraiche. The end result is shockingly similar to a puff pastry, yet the process to make it is so much easier and faster. This dough recipe is from Taste and Technique by Naomi Pomeroy, and it’s one you should keep in your back pocket for appetizers, pastries and tarts such as this. In her book, she offers three different tart toppings, including roasted tomatoes and cheese, and a butternut squash puree with pancetta and sage. I opted to make my own topping and went with a goat cheese- cream cheese spread, crispy roasted mushrooms, and fresh thyme.
The recipe may look long and complicated, but don't be discouraged. The bulk of it is words describing a very simple process of folding and rolling out the dough, which I demonstrate in pictures at the bottom of the post. Then you roast the mushrooms until crispy, whip the cheeses together, and assemble. You can prep each of the items ahead of time, which I break down in detail at the bottom of the recipe. Ultimately, there are so many ways you can switch up the filling, but I love the simplicity and depth of flavor from roasting mushrooms and the layer of creamy, tangy, fresh cheese contrasted with this incredibly buttery and tender tart shell. Enjoy!
mixed mushroom goat cheese tart
serves 6 to 8 | tart shell recipe from Taste & Technique by Naomi Pomeroy
2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp kosher salt
2 tsp baking powder
16 tbsp (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2” cubes and refrigerated until needed
1 cup cold creme fraiche or sour cream, refrigerated until needed
1 tbsp heavy cream
1.5 lbs mixed mushrooms, wiped clean, stems removed and coarsely chopped (such as oyster, cremini, shiitake, chanterelle)
3 cloves garlic, smashed and unpeeled
8-10 sprigs thyme, plus more for garnish
4 oz goat cheese, room temperature
2 oz cream cheese, room temperature
1 tbsp heavy cream (or milk), plus more if needed
Combine the flour, salt and baking powder in a food processor and pulse a few times to combine. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles a coarse meal and the butter is broken into pea-sized pieces, 15- 20 times. Alternatively, combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl and work the butter into the flour mixture with your fingers, knives or a pastry cutter.
Add the creme fraiche directly from the refrigerator and pulse about 10 times to mix and form a shaggy dough. Stop when no dry flour remains. If working by hand, mix in the creme fraiche with a fork until a dough begins to form, then knead in the bowl a few times until the dough comes together.
Place a 2 ft long sheet of plastic wrap on a clean surface and place dough on it. Cover dough in plastic wrap, form into a ball, then shape into a 6" x 10" rectangle. Smooth and flatten the dough with your hands to create a uniform shape. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour, or up to 24 hours.
Remove the dough from the refrigerator, unwrap, and let it rest until just soft enough to roll without cracking, no more than 15 minutes. On a floured work surface, whack the dough a few times with a rolling pin to soften it, then add more flour to the surface if needed.
Roll out the dough to form an 8"x 12" rectangle, with the long edge running parallel to the countertop's edge. Fold the rectangle in thirds, starting with the right edge and ending with the left edge. Rotate the dough 90°, so the left edge is now parallel with the countertop's edge. Roll out the dough to form an 8"x12" rectangle and again fold it in thirds, starting with the new right edge and ending with the new left edge. Rotate the dough 90°, so the left edge is now parallel with the countertop's edge. This time, roll out the dough to a 9"x15" rectangle that's about 1/4" thick, with the long edge running parallel to the countertop's edge. As you roll out the dough, if the butter gets too warm (leaks out or begins to stick), place it in the freezer for a few minutes to re-chill, then continue where you left off.
Cut the rectangle lengthwise into 3 strips, each 3” x 15”. Place the dough strips on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet and prick all over with a fork, leaving 1/4" border around the edge. Preheat the oven to 425°F and place the baking sheet in the freezer while the oven heats up, about 15 minutes.
Whisk together the egg and cream in a small bowl. Remove the pastry from the freezer and brush each strip with egg wash. Bake for 10 minutes, remove pan from the oven and reduce heat to 375°F. Wait a few minutes for the oven temperature to readjust, then bake the pastry sheets for another 12-15 minutes, or until they are a deep golden brown.
Set pastries aside to cool and turn the oven up to 450°F for the mushrooms.
If not already on, preheat oven to 450°F.
Toss mushrooms with garlic, thyme sprigs, and olive oil, and season with salt and freshly ground pepper. Arrange on two foil-lined baking sheets so they are evenly spaced and not crowded.
Roast until mushrooms are golden and crisp, stirring two to three times, 25- 35 minutes. Discard garlic cloves and thyme sprigs, set aside.
While the mushrooms roast, combine goat cheese, cream cheese and heavy cream in a small food processor fitted with a metal blade. Process until smooth and creamy. Alternatively, the cheeses and milk can be combined in a bowl with a handheld mixer
Add more cream, if needed, to make the mixture spreadable but thick enough so it doesn’t ooze off of the tart shell. Set aside.
Divide goat cheese filling between the baked pastry strips, spreading it evenly and leaving 1/4” of pastry uncovered around the edges (an offset spatula works great here). Scatter roasted mushrooms over the cheese filling and sprinkle with fresh thyme leaves.
Serve as is, or if desired, return pastries to the oven for 1- 2 minutes at 375 °F, until cheese is warm but not too runny and mushrooms are heated through. Cut crosswise into pieces and serve immediately.
notes on the goat cheese tart:
tarts are best consumed the day they’re baked, but they can be reheated in a 375°F oven until heated through, about 8-10 minutes. If storing overnight, it's best to keep the shells bare, rather than assembled, to prevent the pastry from getting soggy.
tart dough can be made up to 24 hours ahead of time and refrigerated, or it can be prepped all the way through step 6 and frozen, wrapped in plastic wrap, up to a week in advance. Bake for an additional few minutes until a rich golden color is reached.
both mushrooms and goat cheese filling can be prepared the day before, and the mushrooms can be reheated in the oven at 375°F 8-10 minutes or until heated through.