Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Easy White & Green Asparagus Thyme Tart with Swiss Cheese

When white asparagus or "white gold" as it's called in Germany comes into season in April, many Germans celebrate its arrival with a special meal. In my husband's family, white asparagus is cooked and then served with peeled boiled potatoes and Hollandaise sauce. Simple, but always delicious and a wonderful ritual of welcoming the spring season. 

By the way, did you know fresh asparagus squeaks when it's rubbed together? Me either. Just learned that fun food fact.

German restaurants also serve traditional and regional white asparagus dishes but many present creative interpretations as well. You will find many wonderful variations on restaurant menus all across Germany.

I found white asparagus at Chelsea Market in NYC and knew this time I wanted to make a tart with it but didn't want it to be overly fussy or too complicated. I remembered an asparagus tart I had seen in a Germany cooking magazine using puff pastry and I knew that was the way to go.   

All the other ingredients, excluding the green asparagus, were left over in my fridge. sometimes that's the best way to create a recipe. Competitions cooking shows do it all the time. The tart I saw in the magazine used red pesto to coat the asparagus before cooking, I definitely will try that in the future. 

My result is a spring-themed tart, requiring very few ingredients and is super easy to throw together for dinner, lunch or brunch. This is also a great recipe for entertaining, especially if you are short on time. Speaking of saving time, I used a puff pastry crust for the tart. By all means, if you have a favorite savory tart crust, feel free to swap it out. However, I would double the amount of sour cream if you do so. 

White asparagus has a milder flavor than the green, so alternating the varieties in this tart presents a mellower flavor, a perfect contrast to the sharpness of the swiss cheese. 

Reminder: For any recipe, you make using white asparagus, unlike the green, it must be peeled first before using. Almost all recipes explain this but if you are like me and like to make up recipes, I learned the hard way. Years ago, the look on my poor husband's face as he was trying to chew the asparagus still makes me cringe and laugh. Because of this, I've never repeated my mistake. 

Easy White & Green Asparagus 
Thyme Swiss Cheese Tart
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Bake Time: 20 minutes
Yield: 6 servings

  • 1 lb green asparagus
  • 1 lb white asparagus
  • 2 sheets puff pastry
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/2 cup shredded swiss cheese

  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  • Trim the stems off the asparagus
  • Peel the white asparagus
  • Boil the asparagus for 10 minutes drain well and set aside.
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F
  • While the asparagus is cooking, roll out or pat the puff pastry sheets into an 8" x 12" rectangle.
  • Brush the sour cream on top and sprinkle with the thyme leaves.
  • Lay the asparagus on top and sprinkle the shredded Swiss cheese evenly over the top.
  • Place in the oven and bake for 20 minutes. 
  • Remove, let cool for 10 minutes before slicing and serving. 

Try These Other Asparagus Recipes:

White Asparagus with Speck in Orange Chervil Cream Sauce

Hazelnut Battered Fried Asparagus Spears over Whipped Lemon Parmesan Potatoes

Asparagus with Creamy Ramp Goat Cheese Sauce

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