Gorgonzola Tart with Cranberry Orange Ginger Chutney & Candied Pecans

By now, the combination of marbled blue cheese with cranberries and pecans is nearly cliché. But it’s a flavor profile I never tire of, and one that is not in risk of going out of fashion, at least not any time soon. (I hope.) The first time I tasted this trio of savory goodness, I had just moved to California and was working in a sleepy town outside of San Francisco, in Marin. My office was located in one of those small industrial parks that you can find in suburbia, you know, the ones that are vilified in movies like the cult favorite Office Space.

It just goes to show you: you never know where you might find good food.

Down the street from my office was a little deli. Nothing fancy. They had good sandwiches (where I had my first taste of Dutch Crunch bread – a quintessential Bay Area phenomenon) and superb salads. The greens were always fresh, so fresh you might find a twig in it. And their signature salad was studded with the creamiest blue cheese, walnuts, and a balsamic dressing that was to die for. We all wanted the recipe, but it was a guarded family secret; however, you could buy it by the jug. I’m not sure if they still serve that salad, but I fell in love with those musky-salty-sweet-and-nutty greens.

I wanted to channel this salad into a savory tart. So I set to work by blind baking some tart shells.

Blink Baked Tart Shells

And whipping up a fragrant Gorgonzola-Crème Fraîche-Cranberry filling.

Lick Worthy

I topped it off with a brilliant Cranberry Orange Ginger Chutney that was a dinner party favor from Lisa at Authentic Suburban Gourmet. My friend Lisa is on her way to becoming a canning/jamming queen, and her chutney was the perfect blend of sweet and spicy, just right for balancing the bite of the Gorgonzola.

Cranberry Orange Ginger Chutney

Finally, for some crunch, I crowned the tarts with candied pecans.

Candied Pecans

And then I inhaled a tart. In one sitting.

I am not ashamed. But I did hurry to package a tart to deliver to a good friend of mine who is also a blue cheese, cranberry and pecan junkie. I was happy to enable her lip-smacking addiction.

Special thanks to Lisa (Authentic Suburban Gourmet) for her amazing chutney and to Monika for her help in developing this recipe!

Gallery

…click on images…

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Gorgonzola Tart with Cranberry Orange Ginger Chutney & Candied Pecans

Makes 4 small tarts. You will need tart pans 4″ in diameter.

  • 1 disk Pâte Sucrée (recipe below)
  • 1 cup best quality Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
  • 1/2 cup Crème Fraîche (add more if necessary to achieve creamy consistency)
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • Cranberry Orange Ginger Chutney (or your favorite jam/chutney)
  • Candied Pecans

For the tart shells:

Preheat your oven to 375°F.

Divide your disk of Pâte Sucrée into four disks. Roll out to about 1/8 inch thickness and press into the tart pans. With the excess draping over the sides, roll a rolling pin over the tart pans to trim the excess dough. Set the tart pans in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or until ready to bake.

When ready to blind bake the tart shells, use a fork to press several dots in the dough. Place ceramic pie weights or dried beans over parchment paper in the shells and bake on a baking sheet for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and let the tart shells cool completely on a wire rack.

For the Filling:

Use a hand blender or a whisk (with a lot of arm power) to thoroughly incorporate the Gorgonzola cheese and Crème Fraîche until you achieve a creamy texture. Mix in the dried cranberries.

To assemble:

Fill each tart shell with the Gorgonzola mixture, using a small spatula to smooth evenly. Place about 2 teaspoons of Cranberry Orange Ginger Chutney in the center. Top with candied pecans.

Enjoy with a light salad, or all by itself!

Pâte Sucrée

From The Martha Stewart Living Cookbook, Oxmoor House, 2000. It can also be found here.

Makes 2 medium disks.

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 2 large egg yolks, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup ice water

Please refer to recipe instructions to make the Pâte Sucrée. Divide the dough into two parts, place 1 ball on plastic wrap, flatten into a disk. Divide the other half into four equal pieces, wrap each ball in plastic wrap and flatten into a disk. Store in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour before using, or overnight until ready to use. The dough can also be frozen.

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by Liren Baker on April 19, 2011

26 Responses to “Gorgonzola Tart with Cranberry Orange Ginger Chutney & Candied Pecans”

  1. Rachel — April 19, 2011 @ 6:47 pm (#
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    Wow! What a fabulous combination of flavors for a tart. Ingenious. Loving it.

  2. Brian @ A Thought For Food — April 19, 2011 @ 7:19 pm (#
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    I love the combination of flavors here. That chutney alone sounds wonderful. Another lovely post, Liren!

  3. Joy — April 19, 2011 @ 7:34 pm (#
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    The tart looks so good. I would never think of using gorgonzola cheese.

  4. Lisa { AuthenticSuburbanGourmet } — April 19, 2011 @ 8:10 pm (#
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    Liren – I am honored that you created such a wonderful recipe with the Cranberry Orange Ginger Chutney. I have a few jars left and now I need to make this brilliant recipe. I am going to begin canning soon – starting with strawberries. My hubby and I love this chutney on roast pork tenderloin. Next year I need to double the quantity! Have a suburb week ahead! :-)

  5. Olga @ MangoTomato — April 19, 2011 @ 8:32 pm (#
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    omg this is so pretty and individual-sized and I LOVE gorgonzola.

  6. Jamie — April 20, 2011 @ 1:23 am (#
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    Mmmmmm this is a sensational flavor combo and you’ve added texture to something already perfect! I love it! You have got all my favorite flavors in one great tartlet!

  7. sara826 — April 20, 2011 @ 4:37 am (#
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    These look fantastic! These are my favorite flavor combinations too!

  8. RavieNomNoms — April 20, 2011 @ 6:36 am (#
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    WOW, look at your pictures!! They are so gorgeous. I love the idea of this too…what a fantastically creative idea

  9. Jean — April 20, 2011 @ 7:50 am (#
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    Liren, this tart has so many of the flavors I love that I will just have to try it. I love, love gorgonzola and I think, wait, I know I can eat candied pecans by the bowlful. What’s better is that I still have the jar of chutney that Lisa also gave me. Score! Thanks for such a wonderful idea for a starter. I really, really like this. :-)

  10. norma — April 20, 2011 @ 10:05 am (#
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    I am going over to Lisa’s blog to find the chutney and making this for my husband.

    To you and your family a very happy Easter.

  11. Kate@Diethood — April 20, 2011 @ 11:48 am (#
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    Wow! That is a fantastic tart. And your photos are stunning!

  12. Gwen~healthymamma — April 20, 2011 @ 1:38 pm (#
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    Oh my goodness! This is something special. What a fantabulous idea for a tart. I adore gorgonzola and this combonation of flavors is perfect. Bravo!
    Oh and I love Office Space! ;)

  13. zenchef — April 20, 2011 @ 6:04 pm (#
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    This looks exactly like what I’m craving right now. If I close my eyes and make a wish it will appear in front of me, right? :)

  14. The Cilantropist — April 20, 2011 @ 11:19 pm (#
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    Ahh… Liren I am like you, I never tire of this flavor combination either! Lately I have been *obsessed* with cheese, and so I was immediately drawn to your tart. And how lucky of a gal were you that you got some of Lisa’s chutney – it looks amazing! Lovely recipe, and congrats on Top 9! :)

  15. Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen — April 21, 2011 @ 2:31 am (#
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    It’s a classic combination and for good reason, it’s delicious! I’m loving the combination of Crème Fraîche and Gorgonzola.

  16. Lisa @ Tarte du Jour.com — April 21, 2011 @ 6:00 am (#
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    Lovely tart! What a nie gift of chutney from your friend Lisa. I love how a delicious salad inspired this tart!

  17. Elizabeth @ Saffron Lane — April 21, 2011 @ 8:00 am (#
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    A gorgeous tart! Sometimes you just don’t mess with a good sweet/savory thing. I love to pair blue cheese with caramelized onions, figs and an aged balsamic-berry reduction. Along the same lines — and always inhaled in one sitting, too.

  18. Sara @CaffeIna — April 21, 2011 @ 2:07 pm (#
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    Liren, I would say anything with gorgonzola is delicious and will never go out of fashion (I hope!) but the combination of flavors you have here is just THE perfect one. Let aside those pictures….you outdid yourself! They say a food picture is really good when it makes you hungry. Well…I am hungry and I just had lunch!

  19. Cheryl and Adam @ pictureperfectmeals.com — April 21, 2011 @ 6:16 pm (#
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    This is a perfect recipe! Love the pairing of the Gorgonzola with the chutney… yum! Thanks so much for this, can’t wait on this one!

  20. Katarina — April 22, 2011 @ 4:42 pm (#
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    These look so delicious!

  21. Kita — April 22, 2011 @ 4:48 pm (#
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    What beautiful tarts. I would have never imagined such an interesting combination of flavors.

  22. Kristen — April 23, 2011 @ 11:24 am (#
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    I am with you…this combination of flavors will remain a favorite of mine, too. Those tarts sound amazing.

  23. Karissa — April 23, 2011 @ 3:57 pm (#
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    Wow, simply gorgeous and mouthwatering.

  24. Mark — April 23, 2011 @ 5:05 pm (#
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    Yes! Finally some one posts a sweet dish with Gorgonzola. Love the tarts. Thanks.

  25. Adriennely — April 24, 2011 @ 10:12 pm (#
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    Wow, I’ve never tried desserts with gorgonzola before.. this is intriguing!

  26. Pingback: Cranberry, Orange & Ginger Chutney Brie Cups | A Guest Post from Authentic Suburban Gourmet | Kitchen Confidante

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