I could just about kick myself for not opening this cookbook sooner. I received it as a Christmas gift this past year and for some reason – maybe it was the chicken dish on the cover that spoke more of fall than spring or that it seemed complicated because it was, after all, french – it got put away on a shelf and stayed there.
Well, apparently I don’t know that much about French cooking, or rather, French cooking today. While her book certainly contains traditional dishes that require an extra bit of time and care, it is also full of many wonderfully simple recipes, like this recipe for goat cheese and strawberry tartine.
The combination of fresh goat cheese, sweet strawberries, black pepper and balsamic vinegar is simply delicious. Not only did I enjoy my late lunch, I enjoyed even more reading Dorie’s story of how she stumbled upon the recipe. (The ingredients – baguette, soft goat cheese, ripe strawberries – toppled out of her flimsy grocery bag when she set it on the counter after returning home from the boulevard Raspail market one day.) I’m so glad I finally took this book down from the shelf. I have a feeling it won’t find it’s way back there anytime soon.
goat cheese & strawberry tartine
yield: 4 servings
Dorie’s recipe is written to make 4 servings, she suggests as a late afternoon snack served with chilled white wine. I quartered the recipe as it was just me and enjoyed it with a cup of coffee. In making the recipe, it is important to let the goat cheese soften a bit so that it is easily spreadable. If you choose to toast the bread, let it cool a bit so the goat cheese doesn’t melt. Dorie also mentions, in regard to storing, that these should be made as close to serving time as possible.
12 slices baguette, about 1/3 inch thick
About 3/4 cup soft, spreadable goat cheese
About 16 ripe strawberries, hulled and cut in half
Coarsely ground or crushed black pepper
Balsamic vinegar (optional)
1. Lightly toast the baguette slices & let cool.
2. Spread the goat cheese over the bread and top each tartine with a few berry halves. Sprinkle with black pepper and finish with a couple drops of balsamic vinegar, if you like.
Source: around my french table by Dorie Greenspan