Posts Tagged ‘goat cheese’

Fresh from the Farm

May 19, 2013

During a recent visit to my favorite place, I stopped by the Valley Shepherd Creamery to try some cheese and drool over the yummy goodness they stock. A hand-written sign in their cheese display case caught my eye: fresh goat cheese. My taste for chèvre was ruined in France where cheese is not pasteurized and therefore tastes rich beyond belief. By contrast, much of the cheese here just tastes bland and boring and sad.

When I see cheese that is "raw" or fresh or otherwise not normally bland American cheese, I get excited. When I asked Valley Shepherd Creamery what made the goat cheese with the handwritten sign "fresh", the response made the cheese impossible to resist: it was milked just 4 days ago!

Goat Cheese Tomato Sandwich

a bruscetta style sandwich made with goat cheese, tomato, and crispy kale

The pressure was on though: what to do with the tasty, fresh, lovely hunk of goat cheese? Besides the obvious answer of eating it all straight away. Nearly any combination of food would taste well from dates to figs to melon to grapes… After stopping at my favorite stand in my favorite place and getting some gorgeous tomatoes, this snack just came together naturally.

Goat Cheese Tomato Sandwich

created on-the-fly by Sarah Johnson

Note: measurements are not included and are entirely up to your discretion and tastes.

  • fresh goat cheese
  • tomato
  • kale
  • 1-2T olive oil
  • 1-2T balsamic vinegar
  • toast
  1. Chop kale into bite-size pieces and toss with olive oil.
  2. Spread the kale on a baking sheet, avoiding as much overlap as possible.
  3. Bake at 400F for about 5 minutes, until the kale becomes crispy.
  4. Slice the tomato into wedges.
  5. Slice the cheese into small rectangles.
  6. Layer as follows: toast, cheese, tomato, kale.
  7. Top with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.

Notes and Variations

I had enough goat cheese to try this a few different ways with toast, without toast, with basil instead of kale, with microgreens, and all of them were good. This is a recipe that cannot go wrong unless your ingredients go bad. I ate it as a sandwich, like bruscetta, but it can be served in pieces as large or small as you like. Have fun with it!

Goat Cheese Tomato and Greens

a bruscetta style sandwich made with fresh goat cheese, microgreens, and tomatoes on toast

Personally Imported from Virginia

August 18, 2010

There were many things which came together to inspire and create this delicious treat. First Friday is always a reason to come up with an interesting recipe. Summer is a fun time as well because there are so many fresh ingredients at the markets. This month I was able to bypass the market and go directly to the source.

peaches

Half peck of peaches from Carter Mountain Charlottesville, Virginia.

I took a short trip to visit friends in Charlottesville, Virginia. I really enjoyed the farmer’s market there but also got to go to Carter’s Mountain for a peach festival. They were demonstrating how to make peach salsa which got my mind going. With the half peck of peaches I brought back to Philly, I made peach chutney, peach gazpacho, and just ate peaches non-stop. The downside? I don’t want another peach for the rest of the summer!

Regardless, on the 5 hour train ride, I used a napkin in lieu of my notebook to materialize all of the peach ideas in my head. Another source of inspiration for this treat was a sprig of rosemary from a neighbor’s garden in Charlottesville. Given these two ingredients, I decided goat cheese would work well to bridge the divide of sweet and savory. With some help from Angelo at Downtown Cheese, I found a perfect young goat cheese which turned into a wonderful whipped consistency. The final component of this dessert is my favorite pie crust by Julia Child and Jacques Pepin adapted to a small bite size pastry cup.

peach pastries

Peach and goat cheese pastries.

Savory Peach Pastry

created on by Sarah Johnson

Ingredients
NOTE: measurements for the filling are approximate and can be adjusted to taste

Filling

  • 4 peaches
  • ½ t cinnamon
  • ¼ nutmeg
  • 1 t rosemary (sprigs for garnish)
  • ¼ c + 2 T sugar
  • ½ c + 2 T muscat wine
  • ¼ lb goat cheese
  • Pastry

    • 2 c flour
    • 1 ¾ sticks butter chilled
    • ½ t salt
    • ½ t sugar

    Filling

    1. Peel and dice 2 of the peaches.
    2. Add the cinnamon, nutmeg, rosemary, 2 T sugar, and 2 T wine. Let sit covered in a bowl for at least an hour.
    3. Combine goat cheese, ½ c wine, and ¼ c sugar in a bowl. Mix until smooth and light. Add more sugar or wine as needed.
    4. Stir the peach mixture into the cheese mixture.
    pastry cups

    Pie crust shaped in miniature muffin tins. Recipe from Julia and Jacques.

    Pastry

    1. Slice butter into ½ inch pieces.
    2. Combine flour, butter, salt, and sugar in a cuisinart for a few seconds, or with a pastry blender.
    3. Wrap the dough in plastic and refrigerate for about one hour.
    4. Remove the dough and roll out to ¼ inch thickness.
    5. Cut dough into 3" squares. Place each square into a mini-muffin pan.
    6. Bake at 350F for 10-15 minutes.

    Assembly

    1. Peel remaining two peaches and cut into slices.
    2. Fill each pastry cup with a spoonful of goat cheese mixture.
    3. Garnish with a sprig of rosemary and a slice of peach.