I am a huge fan of asparagus and eat it as often and as much as I can whilst it’s in season. But not everyone gets as gastronomically giddy as me over a simple roasted spear, so for those that need more, I roll out the pastry. If ever there was a way to initiate a love affair with a variety of vegetable in my house (or fruit) I simply have to wrap it up in some buttery, flakey goodness or set it in a soft creamy pillow surrounded by a light crust.
Nothing really new here, Asparagus tarts in all facets have been around forever, this is more a gentle reminder and a couple of my favourite reworkings!
Asparagus, Prosciutto and Pesto Tarts
(A sort of Asparagus roll meets savoury Danish)
- 2 sheets of pre rolled puff pastry
- ½ cup of your favourite pesto
- 12 slim spears of Asparagus
- 8 slices of Prosciutto
- Olive oil
- 1 egg (lightly beaten for egg wash)
Cut the pastry into 12 x 12 cm squares and spread the pesto from corner to opposite corner over each square. Toss the asparagus in a little olive oil and season. Wrap loosely in prosciutto. Pop on top of the pesto. Brush the border with egg wash and fold over the two corners. Leave the ends open and the tips of the asparagus peeping out. Brush the pastry with egg wash and sprinkle with seeds. Bake for about 25 mins at about 190.C Makes a yummy lunch. You could even try hollandaise in place of the pesto for a grown up breakfast treat!
Asparagus tart with blue cheese pastry
I like to use a long rectangular tin as I think it looks pretty, but a round loose bottom tart tin is absolutely fine.If you are using a round tin then I think you should treat yourself to another bunch as it really does look so pretty full of lovely green spears.
- 1 Bunch of Asparagus
- Olive oil
- Salt and pepper
For the Pastry
- 200g plain flour (GF all purpose flour if you need an alternative!)
- Just a pinch of salt
- 100g of butter, diced and chilled
- 50g of Whitestone Windsor blue cheese chilled and diced (treat the cheese like butter)
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon of cold water
For the filling
- ¼ cup of Greek Yoghurt (sour cream also works, but I like the tang from the yoghurt)
- 1 tablespoon of whipped cream
- 1 egg
- 1 crushed clove of garlic
Pop all pastry ingredients into the food processor apart from the egg and water. When you have coarse breadcrumbs add the egg and water and pulse again until your dough comes together. Turn out onto the bench and bring the dough together as gently as you can. If you planning on using a rectangular tin, form it into a small rectangle if you are using a round tin, yep, you guessed it, form a circle! Wrap it up and chill until firm. (If you’re in a rush, you can put it into the freezer to speed it up. Or if you’re making ahead of time, you can leave it in the fridge for a day until you are ready to use it.
- When ready, roll the pastry on a floured surface and line the tin. Trim off the excess
- Gently combine the filling ingredients in the bowl, season and spread over the pastry.
- Toss the asparagus in some olive oil and season. Pop it on top of the filling and bake at 180.C for about 15 minutes until crisp.