This carrot and goat cheese tarte tatin is a savory take on a pastry that is traditionally sweet. Tarte tatin is usually made by layering fruit in a pan, then topping it with puff pastry to bake. The tarte is then flipped over once cooked so the pastry forms the base and the fruit is on top. A defining characteristic of tarte tatin is caramel, which helps bind the tarte and creates greater depth in the flavor. Here, we’re adding balsamic vinegar to the caramel to play off the richness from the goat cheese and the sweetness of the carrots.
If making puff pastry from scratch isn’t your thing, you can easily use store-bought puff pastry and save yourself a lot of time. I love making pastry, so I made mine from scratch for this recipe. I usually use the BBC recipe for puff pastry because I learned how to make pastry by watching the Great British Baking Show. For savory recipes, I like to sub in whole wheat pastry flour for the all-purpose (plain) flour when making the pastry. I think the wheat flour adds something extra to the flavor of the finished product.
This recipe calls for roasting carrots in the oven at a low temperature before putting them in the tarte. This is just to dry them out a bit to avoid the dreaded “soggy bottom” of pastry. If you’re in a hurry and/or don’t mind a soggy bottom, you can skip this step. I left it out of the first iteration of the recipe and the tarte still tasted great. But since the Great British Baking Show is the standard I try to work toward with everything I bake, I wanted to eliminate the soggy bottom.
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Carrot and Goat Cheese Tarte Tatin
- 9 carrots
- 2 tbsp butter
- 2 shallots
- 1 tbsp + 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 1/2 tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp oregano
- 4 oz soft goat cheese (such as chevre)
- 1 puff pastry
- Preheat the oven to 250°F.
- Peel the carrots and slice them in half. Arrange them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake for 15 minutes. When the carrots are out of the oven, increase the temperature to 400°F/375°F convection.
- Meanwhile, slice the shallots. Add 1 tablespoon of butter to a pan. When it's melted, add the shallots and cook for five minutes to caramelize. Then add 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar and stir until the shallots have absorbed it. Remove from heat.
- In a cast iron skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of butter and the sugar until it forms a medium caramel. Stir in the oregano and 1 teaspoon of balsamic vinegar. Spread the caramel as evenly as possibly in the skillet and remove from heat.
- Arrange the carrots in the bottom of the skillet, cut side down, in a starburst pattern. You may need to cut smaller pieces of carrot to fill in the gaps. Then spread the shallots over the carrots. Crumble the goat cheese on top of the carrots and shallots.
- Cut a disk the size of your pan out of the puff pastry. Lay the disk over the ingredients in the skillet and bake for 25 minutes at 400°F/375°F convection. Then drop the temperature to 350°F/325°F convection for ten more minutes.
- Remove the tarte from the oven. Put a plate over the skillet and flip it out so the carrots are on top and the pastry is on bottom (you'll want to do this before the caramel cools and hardens).
- Store in fridge in an airtight container for 2-3 days.