Beet and Farmer Cheese Tartlets in a flakey, buttery crust, are tasty little appetizers. Perfect for your special gathering.
The mix of sweet and savory is one of my favorite combos. Using beets in my cooking let me get a pop of sweet in typically savory recipes. This little appetizer takes a note from that trick and tops buttery crust, and Parmesan cream with sweet diced beets.
I made the tart crusts for these nibbles in a mini muffin tin. No need for rolling dough either, I just pressed the dough into the bottom of the tins. You'll need to pull the crusts out half way through baking to press them down (they are so flaky and puffy).
You can even make the tartlet shells a day ahead. Just cool them completely and store in an airtight container. Don't fill them too early because the cheese will start to soften the crust.
What's farmer cheese you ask? It's just a sweet cream cheese and you can find it at some natural markets or grocery stores. A great substitute for farmer cheese is ricotta. It's a creamy, mild cheese that I mixed Parmesan into for extra savory flavor.
Beet and farmer cheese tartlets are a sweet and savory nibble for your cocktail party guests.
One little tip is to add the beets just before serving these apps. The red bleeds just a bit into the cheese. They look so beautiful on the table with a sprig of thyme as garnish.
Beet and Cheese Tartlets
- ¾ cup cold unsalted butter
- 1¼ cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¾ cup farmer cheese or ricotta
- ½ cup finely grated Parmesan
- Ground black pepper
- 2 teaspoon chopped thyme
- 2 to 4 tablespoon milk
- 2 small beets cooked and peeled
- Heat oven to 400°F. Cut butter into flour and salt in a large bowl using a pastry blender or two knives. Blend until butter is in tiny pieces, then add 3 to 4 tablespoon cold water and stir until dough just comes together. Form dough into a ball; wrap and chill for 1 to 2 hr.
- Divide dough into 24 pieces and roll into balls. Press into mini muffin tins, pressing dough into the bottom and up the sides in an even layer.
- Bake 10 min, remove from oven and use a pestle or rounded side of a teaspoon measure to press down each tart shell. Bake until golden brown about 10 min more.
- In a food processor, blend cheese, Parmesan, a pinch of pepper, thyme and enough milk to make a smooth mixture. Spoon into cooled shells.
- Cut beets into tiny dice; top cheese with beets and garnish with thyme.
Appetizers, Nibble and Finger Foods
If you're throwing a New Year's party, you can use some of these fun ideas from my Ultimate Golden Globes party planner.
For more appetizer recipes click through this list of Tara Teaspoon Appetizer Favorites.
About Tara Teaspoon
I’ve been in the food publishing business for over 20 years, creating recipes & food-styling for magazines, books, television & advertising. Order my new cookbook & stick around for amazing things to eat.
Recipe by Tara Teaspoon. Photographs Alexandra Rowley..Food Stylist Simon Andrews. Prop Stylist Gerri Williams. Originally published LHJ Dec09/Jan10
Mary Bench says
I love these! Look pretty easy too!