Wednesday, April 28, 2010

I Heart Savory Tarts: Spring Asparagus

Nothing says spring like asparagus, and nothing says yum like a savory tart.  Try this tart for lunch next to a tender salad with a lemony vinaigrette and your guests are sure to be impressed.  Just don't tell them it only took a few minutes.

  • Start by lining your tart shell with some puff pastry.  I used my favorite homemade whole wheat puff pastry, but you could use regular store bought as it's not all that crucial in this recipe.
  • Cook 15-20 stems of asparagus, depending on their size, until tender.  I just cooked mine in a pan on the stove top with a drizzle of olive oil out of habit.  You could steam them or even oven roast them (perhaps imparting a bit of smokiness?).  This can be done well in advance, or you can use leftover asparagus from a previous meal.
  • As they cool, cut them into smaller pieces and put them in a food processor.  I just used my small prep food processor, no need for anything fancy.  Be sure to get rid of any tough ends that won't blend easily.
  • Add 1 tbsp cream to start, some salt, and pepper.
  • Blend the mixture until it starts to become smooth and taste it to adjust seasoning.
  • When the mixture is cooler, add one egg.  Don't do this when it's too hot or it will cook!
  • Continue blending, adding a little more cream if necessary.  It should by the consistency of a thick milkshake.
  • Pour the mixture into your tart shell and gently press some thick slices of sweet onion into the top.
  • Place the tart on a cookie sheet (I recommend lining with parchment) and bake in an oven preheated to 425 for about 30 minutes.  The crust should be golden and the onions may have a tinge of brown.
The tart can be served hot or cold.


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