I came up with the idea for this appetizer after having something similar at a local restaurant. I’m not sure what to call this. So I’m going with tart. Generally I think you need some sort of crust to qualify as a tart, but in this case goat cheese is my crust. I’m afraid I’m going to lose you for the next part, but stay with me because I’ve got some ideas if you don’t have the special little pan I use to get the tart to stay in this shape. I use a little springform pan, but a little tart pan could be used, too. I think this could also be made (in reverse order) in a ramekin or other small dish. Just leave it in the dish when you serve it. This appetizer takes about 15 minutes to make and, if I do say so myself, looks quite fancy. I had some pretty heirloom tomatoes from my garden that I used to make the bruchetta. I think the color varieties are quite pretty (Chocolate Stripe, Evergreen, Old German and Brandywine). (Seriously, I promise I’m not always this pretentious/high maintenance/could be a character on Portlandia.) Use what you have on hand. This tastes delicious with plain old roma tomatoes.
- 3 medium tomatoes, chopped
- 2 tbsps red onion, chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2 tsps of white or red wine vinegar
- 2 tsps of Italian parsley, chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/4 – 1/2 kalamata olives, pitted and chopped (use more/less depending on your love for olives)
- 3 oz goat cheese (the entire small log size you can find in most stores)
- 4″ springform pan you can find them at kitchen specialty stores or online
- Combine first six ingredients in a bowl to make bruchetta.
- Blot mixture with paper towels to remove some of the moisture.
- Add bruchetta to the springform pan, using a fork to firmly press into the pan. Blot again with paper towels. NOTE: Some liquid may leak out of the bottom of the pan. This is good, but may make a bit of a mess.
- Add chopped olives in a even layer on top of bruchetta. Notice that I added them in opposite order in the photo. The olives tend to stick to the top so putting them below the bruchetta yields a better presentation.
- Add goat cheese to fill pan by adding pieces and then using the form to firmly press it into the pan and fill all nooks and crannies.
- Keep in the refrigerator until ready to serve, then flip goat cheese down onto a plate. Slowly and gently open the springform pan, then lift off ring and bottom.
- Serve with triscuit-type wheat crackers or whole wheat crostini (look at our Pea Pesto post for instructions on how to make).
- Omit olives; not everyone likes olives as much as we do!
- Use ricotta or other spreadable cheese in place of goat cheese
- Use different bruchetta ingredients. An internet search will turn up TONS of ideas!