Goat Cheese Mousse with Red-Wine Caramel


This crostini from Karen Small at the Flying Fig in Cleveland, topped with goat cheese mousse, red-wine caramel and strawberry compote, is a delightful example of a dish that combines sweet and savory. Each component can be used in a variety of sweet and savory ways: The caramel, for instance, is great drizzled over pecorino cheese or vanilla ice cream. More Desserts with Wine

Goat Cheese Mousse with Red-Wine Caramel
Photo: © Con Poulos
Active Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 30 mins


  • 2 cups dry red wine

  • 1/2 cup ruby port

  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns

  • 1 shallot, minced

  • 2 thyme sprigs plus 1/2 teaspoon chopped thyme

  • 1 1/2 cups sugar

  • 4 cups strawberries, hulled (2 pints)

  • 2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest

  • 2 tablespoons water

  • One 11-ounce log of fresh goat cheese, softened

  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream

  • Pinch of freshly ground pepper

  • Crostini and toasted walnuts, for serving


  1. In a saucepan, bring the wine, port, black peppercorns, shallot, thyme sprigs and 1 cup of the sugar to a boil, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Using a moistened pastry brush, wash down any sugar crystals on the side of the pan. Cook over moderate heat, without stirring, until syrupy and reduced to 1 cup, about 35 minutes. Strain and discard the solids. Let the caramel cool slightly.

  2. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, toss the strawberries, orange zest, water and the remaining 1/2 cup of sugar and let stand until juicy, about 30 minutes.

  3. Bring the strawberries to a boil and simmer over moderate heat until slightly thickened and jammy, about 15 minutes. Transfer the compote to a bowl and let cool.

  4. In a medium bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the goat cheese, cream, ground pepper and chopped thyme until creamy. Spoon the mousse into a bowl and serve with the compote, caramel, crostini and walnuts so guests can assemble their own.

Make Ahead

The caramel, strawberries and mousse can be refrigerated separately for up to 3 days. Bring to room temperature before serving.


The Flying Fig, 2523 Market Ave., Cleveland; 216-241-4243.

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