While I have had Ina Garten’s Make It Ahead Cookbook for almost two years now, I have been horrible about actually testing out recipes from it. To be fair, she has nine cookbooks out now, which will soon be ten, so sticking to one book and cooking through it would take some commitment. So as I returned to this book, I found a recipe I had flagged when I had first read through the cookbook in 2014. It was for a zucchini and goat cheese tart and it was out of this world.
The crust was so flaky, the goat cheese so creamy, and the zucchini was cooked to perfection. That recipe has now been added to my list of Ina Garten all-time favorites because it was a perfect 10 in flavor and texture. This would serve as a perfect appetizer or even a light dinner for 4-6 people. The crust recipe was so delicious it could be used for a wide array of other treats as well. You could even switch out the zucchini for tomato for an equal delicious treat.
I have attached the recipe below because everyone needs to try this absolute amazing recipe as soon as possible. It is a simple recipe, but it does take close to an hour and a half to make. So just plan ahead and don’t miss out on this delectable treat!
*I had pre-cut zucchini for another dish the night before so my zucchini was a different shape than Ina’s. I also added more lemon zest and a bit more goat cheese.*
Ina Garten’s Zucchini & Goat Cheese Tart (found in Make it Ahead on pg. 85)
1 1/4 cup of all-purpose flour
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) cold unsalted butter, 1/2 inch-diced
1/2 teaspoon of white wine vinegar
5 tablespoons ice water
1 1/2 pounds zucchini, unpeeled and sliced 1/8 inch thick
2 tablespoons good olive oil, divided
8 ounces plain creamy goat cheese, such as Montrachet, at room temperature
1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme leaves
1/4 teaspoon grated lemon zest
Place the flour, 3/4 teaspoon of salt, and the butter in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade and pulse 12 to 14 times, until the butter is the size of peas. With the processor running, pour the vinegar and ice water through the feed tube and continue to process and pulse until the dough just comes together. Dump out on a floured board, form into a disk, wrap in plastic, and chill for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, place the zucchini in a colander set over a plate. Toss it with 2 teaspoons of salt and set aside for 30 minutes. Spread the zucchini out on a clean dish towel, roll it up, and squeeze gently to remove some of the liquid. Put the zucchini slice into a bowl and toss with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. With a fork, mash together the goat cheese, thyme, lemon zest, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and set aside.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Roll the dough out on a floured board to an 11-inch circle and place on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Spread the dough with the goat cheese mixture, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Lay the zucchini slices in tightly overlapping circles, starting at the very edge of the pastry. Continue overlapping circles of zucchini until the whole tart is covered. Drizzle with the remaining tablespoon of olive oil and sprinkle with pepper. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, until the dough is golden brown. Cut in wedges and serve hot, warm, or at room temperature.