Thursday, November 6, 2008

Cheddar, Apple & Bacon Tarts

For our anniversary this year Matt & I went to a favorite local restaurant, Corner Table. One of the desserts we had featured apples, cheddar cheese & bacon. We really liked the flavor combination though wished it had been served warm. Since we still have a few apples left I decided to try making my own dessert using those ingredients.
Cheddar, Apple & Bacon Tart
Don't let the bacon in this dessert scare you, the saltiness of it is a perfect match to the sweet apples & crust. I know the cheddar adds saltiness too but the bacon really takes it up a notch. 

The crust I used for this is one I adapted from the Rich Sweet Pastry recipe in Small Batch Baking. It came out a lot like a sugar cookie & Matt really liked it, but I think next time I'll try using something flakier like the crusts I've used to make galettes.

Cheddar, Apple & Bacon Tarts

1/4 c confectioners' sugar
1/2 c + 1 T all-purpose flour
4 T + 1 t unsalted butter, room temperature
1 egg yolk 
2 t apple cider
1 slice bacon, cut into small pieces
1 apple, peeled, cored & cut into 1/4-inch slices
2 T sugar
1/4 t cinnamon
2 T grated sharp cheddar cheese

Put the confectioners' sugar, flour & a pinch of salt in a food processor, pulse to blend. Add 2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon of butter and the egg yolk, pulse to blend. Add the apple cider 1 teaspoon at a time until the dough holds together. Form the dough into two balls & flatten them into discs. Wrap the discs in plastic wrap & chill for at least 30 minutes.

Roll the chilled dough out into 5 to 6-inch circles. Press into two buttered 4 1/2" x 3/4" tart pans with removable bottoms. Use the rolling pin or your hand to cut away the excess dough (save the excess dough if you want to create shapes for the top of the tarts). Prick holes with a fork in the bottom of the tarts. Put in the freezer for 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 325 F. Put the chilled tart shells on a baking sheet. Line the inside of the shells with tin foil & then fill with pie weights or dried beans. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil & weights & bake for 6 more minutes until the crusts are just dry.

In a skillet melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter over medium-high heat. Add the apples & stir to coat them. Let cook until the apples are getting soft on the outside but still firm in the middle. Stir in the sugar, cinnamon & a pinch of salt. Remove from heat.

Cook the bacon pieces until crisp. Drain on a paper towel.

Put one tablespoon of grated cheese into the bottom of each tart shell. Top the cheese with apple slices. Sprinkle the bacon on top of the apples.  

Bake at 325 F for 30 - 35 minutes on a baking sheet, the crust should be golden brown. Move tarts in their pans to a rack to cool slightly before removing from pans.

Makes 2 tarts


Stacey Snacks said...

kat, you are very creative.
I once had a delicious apple/cheddar pie. It was very good.
Apples and bacon with cheese are perfect together. Savory and sweet.

Lori said...

This sounds so interesting. I am such a big fan of the sweet/salty combo.

Alexa said...

This so unusual and it looks so pretty.

Maris said...

Mmm. Cheddar and apple is such a good combo. I like it with honey mustard on a sandwich.

eatingclubvancouver_js said...

This looks like the perfect capper to a wonderful meal.

The Food Librarian said...

Lovely photo and it looks so tasty! I think bacon can be on anything. :)

Lori said...

Hey they have chocolate covered bacon, why not? I think it looks very tastey. I have long been a fan of cheddar and apples together. Yum KAt, everything you make looks so good.

giz said...

Niiiccceee - I'm trying to figure out what to take to a pot luck - this could fill the bill

grace said...

i just can't seem to get behind the apple-cheddar combination. perhaps the bacon would ease me into it. :)

Anonymous said...

I know this had to have been delicious! I made cheddar-apple-bacon breakfast panini a little while back and I just loved the sweet & salty combo. And, of course, everything is better with bacon :-)

Alicia Foodycat said...

I've never been scared of bacon! This sounds fantastic.

Deborah said...

What a great combination of ingredients!

Nonna Rose said...

Kat, you are such an inspiration to me. I also like the idea of starting your cookie baking now. I ususally wait until Black Friday to start baking and freezing. I just might join you and start this week!

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Measurement Abbreviations

T = Tablespoon
t = teaspoon
c = cup
lb = pound
oz - ounce


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