Goat’s Cheese, Sticky Walnut and Caramelised Onion Tarts

, from Issue #98. July, 2021
Photography by Josh Griggs.
Goat’s Cheese, Sticky Walnut and Caramelised Onion Tarts

Sweet, caramelised onions, earthy thyme and goat’s cheese on crispy flaky pastry – it’s a winning combination. Adding sticky walnuts takes them to a next-level starter or a light lunch when served with a salad.

Makes: 4


Sticky walnuts
1/3 cup caster sugar
1 tablespoon water
½ cup walnut pieces

500 grams ready-rolled puff pastry (I used Paneton Flaky Pastry)
1 egg yolk mixed with ½ teaspoon water
350 grams rind-on goat's cheese (I used 2 packets of Cranky Goat The Lynton)
olive oil for brushing
sea salt and ground pepper
sprigs thyme
Caramelised Onions (see recipe below)


STICKY WALNUTS: Line a baking tray with baking paper. Preheat the oven to 190°C fan bake. STICKY WALNUTS: Put the sugar and water in a small saucepan and slowly bring to the boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Cook until it turns golden then add the walnuts and stir to coat. Tip onto a piece of baking paper and quickly spread out so they’re not all in one clump. Leave to cool and harden then break into pieces.

TARTS: Cut out 4 x 14cm pastry rounds and place on the prepared baking tray. Lightly score a 1cm border in from the edge of each pastry round and prick the bases with a fork. Chill until firm.

Brush the pastry borders with egg wash. Try not to let it run down the sides as it will rise unevenly.

Spread a good layer of the onions in the base of each tart. Cut the cheese into thick discs and place over the onion. Lightly brush with olive oil and grind over some pepper.

Bake for about 20 minutes, or until the cheese is soft and the pastry has risen and is golden brown.

TO SERVE: Transfer the tarts to serving plates and top each with a spoonful of the onions, a few sticky walnuts and a sprig of thyme. Serve hot.

Caramelised Onions
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
4 large brown onions, sliced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
sea salt and ground pepper
2 tablespoons balsamic glaze
1 tablespoon brown sugar

Heat the oil and butter in a large sauté pan and add the onions and garlic. Season generously and cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until soft. Increase the heat and add the balsamic glaze and brown sugar. Cook until the onions are sticky and well glazed, about 20 minutes. Cool. MAKES ABOUT 1½ CUPS