‘Mad Men’ Menu: Goat Cheese Tart

Mad Men, Main Courses, Meatless, Pie / Saturday, July 24th, 2010

OK, I cheated a little on this one.

I dropped my tart pan on the kitchen floor, and it didn’t bounce.

So, I grabbed a deep-dish pie crust out of the freezer. And, it turns out that Pillsbury® Pet-Ritz® frozen pie crusts came out in 1962, so they fit nicely into our “Mad Men” menu. I love it when Laziness and Serendipity come together.

For the filling, I sautéed almost a cup of chopped shallots in butter and scattered them on the bottom of the crust. Then, I prepped the goat cheese mixture in the food processor. Most of the filling’s flavor comes from the goat cheese, so look for one that’s pretty intense, like a garlic-and-herb soft goat cheese. The goat cheese is combined with heavy cream, eggs, basil and freshly ground black pepper to create a filling that’s rich and creamy but doesn’t seem too heavy.

You could stop with the Goat Cheese Tart and be perfectly content, but it reminded me so much of Ina Garten’s White Pizza with Arugula that I went ahead and added a big handful of arugula tossed in olive oil and lemon juice to the top of the tart for texture, crunch and a little lemony kick. However, you could serve the arugula salad on the side.

Goat Cheese Tart with Arugula

Adapted from Ina Garten’s “Barefoot in Paris” and “Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics”

If you don’t have time to make the tart crust, you can use a frozen pie crust. Just make sure it’s a deep-dish crust, and don’t overfill it.


  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the board
  • Kosher salt
  • 13 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, divided
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons ice water

  • 3/4 cup chopped shallots (3 to 4 shallots)
  • 10 1/2 ounces garlic-and-herb soft goat cheese (recommended: Montrachet}
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3 extra-large eggs
  • 1/4 cup chopped basil leaves
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    Arugula Salad:

  • 1 to 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 to 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 large handful of arugula
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. For the Crust: Put the flour and 1/4 teaspoon salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Cut 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) of the butter into large dice, add to the bowl, and pulse until the butter is the size of peas. With the machine running, add the ice water all at once and process until the dough becomes crumbly. Don’t overprocess. Dump the dough out on a floured board, gather it loosely into a ball, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  3. Roll the dough on a well-floured board and fit it into a 9-inch tart pan with a removable sides, rolling the pin over the top to cut off the excess dough. Butter 1 side of a square of aluminum foil and fit it, butter side down, into the tart pan. Fill the foil with rice or beans. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove the beans and foil from the tart shell, prick the bottom all over with a fork, and bake for another 10 minutes.
  4. For the Filling: Meanwhile, heat the remaining tablespoon of butter in a small pan and saute the shallots over low heat for 5 minutes, or until tender. Place the goat cheese in the bowl of the food processor and process until crumbly. Add the cream, eggs, basil, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and the pepper and process until blended.
  5. Scatter the cooked shallots over the bottom of the tart shell. Pour the goat cheese mixture over the shallots to fill the shell (if the shell has shrunk, there may be leftover filling). Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until the tart is firm when shaken and the top is lightly browned. Allow to cool for 10 minutes and serve hot or at room temperature.
  6. For the Salad: Whisk together the olive oil, the lemon juice, salt and pepper. When the tart is cool, place the arugula in a large bowl and toss with just enough lemon vinaigrette to moisten. Place the arugula on the tart, and serve immediately.

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5 thoughts on “‘Mad Men’ Menu: Goat Cheese Tart

  1. Sounds delish! I've been working up the nerve to make homemade goat's cheese (it's not sold here) so I think this is one of the dishes I'm going to make with it! Thanks for the recipe : ))

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