These tassies are one of the foolproof specialities I make every year for the holidays. They also make a perfect small bite for an afternoon tea with that tang of the goat and cream cheeses paired with the sweetness of honey and fig; just add one cup of a nice strong black tea and life is all good.
This recipe is one I found years ago in one of those one-time “Christmas cookie” specialty magazines that only come out during the holidays. You know, the kind that you see when you’re standing in line at the grocery store waiting your turn, amusing yourself by reading all the magazine cover lines. Then you see the scrumptious-looking pictures of cookies on the cover, decide you’re going to get ambitious and actually bake a few of them this time, and in it goes in the grocery basket.
Well, that time I actually followed through on one or two of them! And I only had to make this for the family one time, and it became a family tradition. Every time we have a holiday gathering coming up, the kids always ask me to bring these. And there’s usually hardly any left over to snack on the next day.
This is an easy recipe to pull together, especially if you buy pre-made mini phyllo dough shells, like these made by Athens Foods. At least in the US, I’ve always found this or another brand in the frozen dessert section in almost any grocery store. Otherwise, you could buy the frozen phyllo dough and make your own phyllo cups. Because I’m usually making a number of holiday treats at the same time, I almost always buy the pre-made ones.
Making the goat cheese mixture is really very straightforward – simply put all the ingredients noted in a bowl and cream together with a mixer or wooden spoon. I usually hold off on adding the chopped dried fig until just before I’m going to spoon them in the phyllo cups and put them in the oven.
Then fill the cups, about half a heaping teaspoonful, scraping it off the spoon with your finger into each cup.
Once they come out of the oven and have a little time to cool, drizzle a little extra honey over the top of each tassie, and sprinkle the finely chopped pecans over that.
And voila! You have a terrific little bite to go with your afternoon tea, or any special occasion.
I personally like them when you’ve just put the honey and pecans on and they’re still a little warm and the cheese just melts in your mouth – to die for! Though I wouldn’t say no to one either after they’ve chilled, and even the next day.
Goat Cheese, Honey and Fig Tassies
- 6 oz. soft goat cheese
- 3 oz. cream cheese, softened
- 3 egg yolks
- 1/4 c. whipping cream
- 1 Tbsp. honey
- 1/3 c. finely chopped dried figs
- 36 homemade Phyllo cups, or 3 packages or baked miniature phyllo dough shells (12 shells per package)
- 1/4 c. toasted pecans, finely chopped
- Honey to drizzle over the tassies after baking
DirectionsPreheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Beat goat cheese, cream cheese, egg yolks, cream and 1 tablespoon honey in a medium bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Stir in dried figs.
If using packaged phyllo shells, places shells in 1 3/4″ muffin cups. Spoon cheese mixture evenly among the shells. Bake in preheated oven for 15-18 minutes, or until filling is set and pastry is golden. (If making your own phyllo cups, bake a bit longer, more like 25 minutes). Transfer the tassies to a wire rack to cool.
Drizzle additional honey over each tassie and sprinkle with the chopped pecans. If desired, refrigerate for a couple of hours before serving. Keeps up to a couple of days in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
To toast the pecans, spread in a single layer in a shallow baking pan. Bake in a preheated 350 degree Fahrenheit oven for 5-10 minutes or until nuts are slightly golden brown, stirring once or twice. Cool completely before chopping and setting aside.