Monday, October 27, 2014

Havarti~Apple~Ham Tart

Pumpkin spice anything and everything seems to get all the attention in autumn, but personally, I prefer apple, with or without spice. In this case apple with cheese and ham in tart form.
Initially I wanted to make this Epoisses, Ham, and Apple Tart. I figured we'd have to go to Whole Foods for epoisses but with any luck our Market District would have it. Of course I wasn't sure what epoisses cheese really is. So I did research.
It's a pungent, cows milk cheese. It's a soft red-orange color. And it's very, very soft. The word pungent worried me. I like to think I am a lover of cheese, but truthfully, I do not, in fact, love all cheese. Like that appenzeller cheese SP once brought home. The smell was a huge turn off and the taste was... well, not to my liking. So I started to have second thoughts about making this tart. Stinky cheese tart didn't sound appealing.
Next I looked up epoisses substitutes. One suggestion is muenster, but I am not a huge fan of muenster. The other suggested substitutes are also stinky cheeses. So I put this dinner idea on the back burner. Then, my October Food Network Magazine (finally!) showed up and inside was a pizza suggestion: apple, havarti, ham, onion, and thyme pizza. Huh. So I re-suggested this tart to SP for dinner but using havarti instead of a stinky cheese.
I'm so happy we ended up making this. It's delicious. It's also rich. We ate it with a spring mix salad, which is a great side because you need something to balance the rich tart. The havarti melts nicely and is so creamy and smooth. Salty bite of ham. The sweet apple. Flaky tart crust. 
Here's our version:

Make the tart as directed in the Epoisses, Ham, & Apple Tart recipe.

8 oz havarti, cubed
1/4 lb sliced rosemary ham, cut into small pieces
one apple, peeled & thinly sliced (we used Fuji)

For egg-cream filling, make as directed in the Epoisses, Ham, & Apple Tart recipe. We omitted the salt. We happen to have white pepper but if we hadn't, we would have used black pepper.

We only have a 9 inch tart pan, so that's what we used. At first we scaled down the filling because the recipe is for an 11 inch tart pan, but it didn't seem to be enough filling when we started pouring it into the shell, so we ended up making & using the full amount. Somehow, it all fit inside the tart. Of course, our shell cracked when it baked, and some of our liquid filling was lost when it seeped out the tart crack and then out the bottom of the tart pan since it has a removable bottom. So maybe that's why it all fit!

We didn't use all of our apple slices because we didn't think they would fit but next time, we would use them all. 

Since we used rosemary ham , we didn't use any other herb/seasoning (other than nutmeg & pepper). We get our rosemary ham at Market District but not at the deli counter, at the counter where the cheeses and prosciutto are. If we used a plain ham, we would sprinkle thyme in with the filling.

Next time I would add a wee bit of diced onion.

Next time we might also try it as a pizza - the crust should be tasty but really it's just a vehicle for the havarti-ham-apple combination that is so darn delicious!

1 comment:

  1. I love that you suggest havarti, otherwise I may not have considered making it! I also consider myself a cheese lover, just not a very adventurous one ;) This is a must-make for November. Thank you for sharing!