Easier than Pie Asparagus Tart

June 5, 2012 § 4 Comments

I was going to call this “easy as pie” asparagus tart, but this recipe is so much easier to make than pie! I don’t know about you but pie isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when I want to bake something quick and easy. I love pie, I really do, but it does take a bit of time, especially if you’re making your own crust as I like to do. (I just like knowing exactly what I’m eating.)

It’s very much like theĀ Clafouti recipe in my last post. I was thinking of calling it “asparagus puff pancake” or “Yorkshire asparagus pudding”. Somehow these didn’t quite sound right or even appetizing. Am I right?

But this tart is really all these recipes combined. You take a basic puff pancake recipe, which is eggs, flour and milk. Like the Clafouti, heat your baking dish before putting the batter in, which is what gives it that nice puffy rise. Change the ingredients, omit the sweetener and instead of a sweet dessert you have a savory tart.

You can get really creative here and use many different combinations. Saute some mushrooms and sprinkle with thyme before baking. Make it with cherry tomatoes, fresh basil and grated cheese. Add some ham, or pancetta. Try zucchini, oregano and mozzarella, or even baked in a larger pan and just topped with feta and herbs, which will give it a thinner crust.

This makes a delicious side dish, serve it for brunch, or double the recipe and serve as a light supper with a salad. I ate half of it immediately after I took the picture!

Ingredients:

1/2 cup flour ( I use white spelt)

1/2 cup milk

1 egg

2 TBL butter for the pan

asparagus, as many as needed to cover the pan you’re using- I used about 8 or 9 spears

Parmesan cheese, around 2 to 3 TBl

salt and pepper

ovenproof pan or dish, 8 or 9 inch ( the larger the thinner the tart will be)

Steps:

Heat oven to 425 degrees. Put butter in your ovenproof dish and put into oven. (I sometimes use cast iron) Beat milk, flour, eggs, a pinch of black pepper and a pinch or two of salt. When butter is sizzling, remove pan from oven (carefully) and pour the batter into it. Place the asparagus gently on top of the batter. Put back into the oven and bake for 20 minutes.

When done, remove from oven, immediately grate some fresh Parmesan or Romano cheese on top.

I like to give it a squeeze of fresh lemon juice and and extra sprinkling of flaky sea salt, like Maldon. The crunchy, salty taste is perfect with the asparagus and cheese.

For the mushroom and onion tart:

Saute about 1/2 cup chopped or sliced onion in a little olive oil. When soft, add chopped mushrooms of your choice, I used cremini here, about 1 cup. Saute all together about 5 to 6 minutes. Pour your batter mixture from the above recipe over this and put into hot 425 degree oven, 20 minutes. When done, immediately grate 1/2 cup cheese over the top. I used Provolone, but again, Parmesan, Romano or Cheddar would be delicious.

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