I managed to pull a muscle at the wedding I went to a few weeks ago, a sure sign that I owned the dancefloor! In my frazzled, post bank holiday state, I decided to knock up some comfort food and had a bit of a Jamie fest, including this asparagus tart and the previously posted crispy sea bass dish. The asparagus tart is a great looking but simple to make dish that ticks the boxes of fresh, summery and veggie, a perfect meal to knock up for the Ju (who has been working on a bank holiday, boo!)
Crispy asparagus and potato tart
- 2 large potatoes
- Pre-rolled filo pastry sheets
- Big bunch of asparagus spears
- Big knob of melted butter
- Handful of grated cheddar cheese
- Handful of soft cheese – Boursin works
- 3 free range eggs
- tsp ground nutmeg
- Small pot of double cream
Pre heat the oven to 190 whilst peeling the spuds. Cut them into chunks and boil in salted water until soft, I added the asparagus spears to the pan for the last 3 mins to blanch. Get a oven proof dish (what ever size you like) I used a medium sized square dish that was about an inch deep and line with layers of filo pastry. As you layer cover the pastry with melted butter and be sure to leave some excess pastry over the edges which will form the crust. Jamie O suggests about 5 layers of pastry should do the trick.
The spuds should be cooked by now, drain well, put the aspargus aside and mash the potato, mixing in the cheese. I dropped in a diced garlic clove at this point as well but if your using Boursin that should be fine instead. In a seperate bowl, mix the eggs and cream together then add to the mash. Add the nutmeg and a generous sample of salt and pepper to season. Much like with the potato stuffed peppers I did with my tapas experiment the mash seemed a bit dull and needed some jazzing up. I may have been a bit shy on the cheese as I’m not a big fan but next time I think I’ll try either loading the spuds up with herbs (chives or mint maybe) or possibly something else like whole grain mustard or horseradish.
Add the potato mix to the dish, spreading out with the back of a spoon. Scrunch the edges of the pastry so when it cooks it will form a crispy crust. Place the asparagus spears on top in even lines across the potato, brush with the remaining melted butter and place in the middle of the oven for 20mins. Once cooked let stand for ten minutes before serving. On a hunt for alternatives and after a quick Google I wish I stumbled across an old post from Karolina for the same recipe, which suggests popping under the grill for 3 minutes after it comes out of the oven, looking at her pictures of a beautiful the golden tart it seems likes this was a good shout and I’ve noted for next time.
I served the tart with two salads, again both from Jamie’s 30 minute meals series, a mixed tomato salad and a pesto and mozzarella salad. These are uber simple and well worth adding to your arsenal when in need of a quick salad:
Mixed tomato salad – either roughly chopped or scrunch the toms into a serving platter. Season with rock salt, black pepper and drizzle with 3 parts extra virgin olive and 1 part balsamic vinegar. Roll them about with your fingers, dice a fresh chilli and add to the mix, grate over a clove of garlic and add torn basil leaves from a height (if you can get different coloured tomatoes all the better)
Mozzarella and pesto salad – Take 1 or 2 mozzarella balls a tear into chunks. spoon pesto onto each chunk and place on a serving platter. Roughly chop some cherry tomatoes and dot around the mozzarella. Season with salt and pepper and a light drizzle of extra virgin then finish with some torn basil leaves dropped from a height.
And that’s your lot. Take the whole lot to the table and serve there or chuck in containers and take to the beach. Enjoy!