When I read a really great book, I become almost achingly attached the the characters in it. I fall completely in love with them. Does anyone else do this?
I am currently reading The Hunger Games Trilogy for the second time. I had to reread it because I just could not get enough of Peeta and Katniss. Peeta, in fact, might be my favorite protagonist of all time. Or maybe tied with Holden Caulfield. Or Hadassah.
Anyway, in The Hunger Games, Peeta mentions that at his family’s bakery, they make goat cheese and apple tarts.
So, this is my tribute to you and all your perfection, Peeta Mellark. Only, I didn’t have apples on hand, so work with me here. I love you.
The Peeta Mellark Tart
(Luke hates goat cheese and he LOVED this tart)
For The Crust:
3 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cup cold salted sweet cream butter, cut into small chunks
1 whole egg, slightly beaten
5 tablespoons cold water
1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar
(or… you could buy a ready made pie crust if you’re into that kind of thing)
For the Filling:
1 whole ripe pear
1/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup crumbled goat cheese
3 tablespoons cold salted sweet cream butter
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
Prepare the crust: Combine flour and salt in a large mixing bowl. Add butter to the flour, and combine using a pastry cutter or fork. Once well combined and crumbly, add the egg, water, and vinegar and mix well with your hands or a wooden spoon. Once the dough is well combined, form it into two balls. You will use one now, and you can put the other in a freezer bag to save for another use. Roll out one ball of dough on a floured surface until it’s about 1/4 inch thick. Place the pie crust on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, and set aside.
(Alternately, you could remove the ready made crust from the packaging, unroll it, and place it on a cookie sheet. However, I can assure you that the above crust will be much flakier, more buttery, and delicious.)
Cut the pear in half from bottom to top. Remove the core with a knife. Lay the pear half cut side down, and slice into thin slices. Repeat with the other pear half. In a bowl, combine brown sugar and pear slices, stirring gently until the pear slices are well coated.
Spread the goat cheese over the surface of the crust, leaving about 3-4 inches of space around the edge. Top with the pear mixture. Fold the crust over the filling, overlapping where you need to, leaving the center of the tart uncovered.
Cut the cold butter into 6 chunks of 1/2 tablespoon each, and arrange them over the top of the tart, halfway on the crust, halfway on the exposed filling.
Bake about 40 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown. Allow to cool 5-10 minutes, cut into wedges, and serve. Yum!