I have been obsessed with puff pastry lately. Yes, it has a ton of butter. Yes, it’s made with white flour. But ever since making homemade hot pockets with puff pastry, I can’t seem to get it out of my head! And with the gorgeous displays of seasonal, bright green, delicious asparagus at the grocery stores lately, I knew what had to be done.
And so, the asparagus tart with goat cheese and gruyere was born. And it was good.
Someday, I will learn how to make whole wheat puff pastry dough. Anyone have any good recipes for it? I’ve made a whole wheat pie crust before but in the interest of creating a no-fuss, quick meal on a weeknight, I chose the pre-made frozen alternative. You’d think Whole Foods would carry pre-made whole wheat puff pastry… but alas, they do not.
In my defense, I went for a run before making this! (thank you, yes, thank you, please hold your applause.)
This tart is characterized by: the pastry dough rising around the edges to form a delicious thick and golden crust, the creamy goat cheese topped with gruyere spread as a base layer, and asparagus topped with olive oil, fresh cracked pepper, and salt which roasts to perfection in the oven.
To make the crust rise, cut a small slit along the edges of the pastry (not all the way). This will separate the area on which you put the toppings from the crust. To make the goat cheese extra spreadable, mix with a few tablespoons of milk or cream. Spread along the top of the dough, and lick the spatula after (the last part is optional). Top with grated gruyere cheese, trimmed asparagus spears, and a dash of olive oil, salt, and fresh cracked pepper. It’s like making a pizza!
Whooooaaa- pizza puff pastry anyone? Oh, Lord. What an epiphany. Must try.
To trim asparagus: hold it in the middle and grab the tough end. Bend, and snap! (anyone catch that reference?) It will snap at the place where it becomes less tough. Then, you can arrange them and trim them to a uniform size if you want to. (I learned this trick from my friend Cindy wayyyy back in my wee cooking days of college. She has her own blog called swim eat repeat. Check it out!)
My one regret- if I had a time machine, I would go back and add much more asparagus to the tart. Since puff pastry expands a lot, it spreads the asparagus out as it bakes. Go ahead and do yourself a favor and pack as much as you can on before cooking!
The “hands-on” time for this recipe is really only about 10 minutes, and since it is baked on parchment paper, the clean-up is not too bad! Although, I never really think much about clean up because my lovely husband does the dishes whenever I cook. Which is most nights. He’s just the best, isn’t he? :-)
This tart is very rich (on account of all the butter and cheese…), but is great for dinner or lunch paired with a side salad, or cut up into small pieces as a party appetizer! Hope you enjoy!
|Asparagus Tart with Goat Cheese and Gruyere|| |
- 10-20 asparagus spears, trimmed and rinsed (really, however many you want!)
- 1 package frozen puff pastry, thawed
- 3 oz. goat cheese
- 2-3 tablespoons milk or cream
- 1 cup shredded gruyere cheese
- olive oil, salt, and freshly ground black pepper
- Unfold puff pastry on a parchment lined baking sheet. Cut into smaller sections, if you want smaller tarts.
- Using a small sharp knife, cut a slit approximately ½ inch from the edge of the puff pastry, without cutting through the dough to the bottom. This will allow the edge to rise and create a puffy, crispy crust.
- In a small bowl, mix goat cheese with milk/cream until smooth and spreadable. Spread on top of puff pastry, inside cut lines.
- Top with shredded gruyere.
- Arrange the asparagus spears on top. Feel free to pack them on- the puff pastry will expand, causing them to spread out as it cooks. If I had a time machine, I would go back and add more to mine (I used 10 spears).
- Drizzle the top with olive oil and salt/pepper.
- Bake at 400 for approximately 20 minutes, or until edges of pastry are golden brown.