Margarita's Party Recipes

Christmas Eve Dinner - 2004

Pancetta, Leek, and Goat Cheese Tartlets

I wanted to make a simple yet yummy appetizer for Xmas Eve dinner, and one that could be made ahead. These tartlets fit the bill perfectly, specially as I decided to use pre-baked frozen fillo shells instead of baking the crust myself. They were a great hit at my dinner and they would be a wonderful hors d'oeuvre to serve at any party. I'll certainly make them again.

In addition to using commercial shells, I varied the original recipe by using only 3 ounces of pancetta instead of the 4 the recipe asked for, as that's how it was packaged at the supermarket. I think that was a mistake and that they would have been better with a little more pancetta - though they were great already.

This recipe will make 30 mini-tartlets, you'll need at least 4-5 to serve them as an appetizer, thought they probably work better as an amuse buche.

Pancetta, Leek, and Goat Cheese Tartlets


  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • 2 large leeks, chopped (white & pale green parts only)
  • 1 tsp. vegetable oil
  • 3 oz pancetta, chopped
  • 2/3 cup half and half
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • a dash black pepper
  • 2 oz fresh goat cheese, crumbled
  • 30 (2 packages) frozen mini fillo shells


    Preheat oven to 350 F. Take frozen shells of the freezer and let thaw on the counter.

    Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add leeks and sauté for 10 minutes.

    Heat oil in a small skillet over medium-high heat. Add pancetta and sauté untril crisp, about 6 minutes. Remove from the oil using a slotted spoon and set on paper towels to dry.

    Whisk half and half, egg yolks, salt and pepper together. Add goat cheese and mix. Add the leeks and pancetta.

    Spoon the filling into the shells. Place shells onto an ungreased baking sheet. Bake until the filling is set, about 15 minutes.

    If you are using them the next day, cool and place in the refrigerator. Before serving them, remove from the fridge, pre-heat oven to 325 F and bake until warm, about 10 minutes.

    Adapted from a recipe at

  • Christmas Eve Dinner - 2004 Recipes | All Recipes | e-mail