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Asparagus Tarts

Asparagus Tarts with a Pesto Surprise

Nutty wholemeal pastry baked with a secret layer of pesto, filled with goose egg and topped with English asparagus. Ideal spring picnic fare.
Course Afternoon Tea, Lunch, Starter
Cuisine British
Keywords asparagus, pesto, picnics, spring, tarts
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Resting Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 10 individual tarts
Author Choclette

Ingredients

Pastry

  • 225 g (8oz) wholemeal flour
  • 115 g (4oz) unsalted butter
  • pinch of sea or rock salt
  • 3-4 tbsp natural yoghurt

Filling

  • 5 tsp pesto (I used wild garlic pesto)
  • 10 asparagus spears
  • 1 goose egg (or 3 large hens eggs)
  • 50 ml milk
  • salt & pepper to season

Instructions

Pastry

  1. In a large bowl rub the butter into the flour and salt with your fingers until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
  2. Stir in the yoghurt with a flat bladed knife until the mixture starts to form into clumps. Start with 3 tbsp, then use more if needed.
  3. Cover and leave to rest in a cool place for ½ an hour or so.
  4. Roll the pastry out on a floured surface as thinly as possible and cut out circles big enough to fit the tart cases. Reroll the trimmings until all of the pastry is used.
  5. Press the pastry into the sides and trim the tops with a knife.

Filling

  1. Blanch the asparagus in a little simmering water for a couple of minutes. Drain the spears and cut theminto three pieces.
  2. Spread a ½ tsp of pesto on the bottom of each tart case.
  3. Place the asparagus pieces over the top.
  4. Whisk the egg (or eggs) in a jug with the milk and a little salt and pepper and divide the mixture between the tarts. Be careful not to overfill them as the mixture will rise during cooking.
  5. Bake at 200℃ for about 20 minutes or until the pastry looks golden and the filling has set.
  6. Leave to cool in the case then remove the tarts from the tins.

Recipe Notes

You can use a food processor to make the pastry.
There will be some pastry left over, enough for eight small jam tarts.
The asparagus water makes lovely stock.
The tarts can be kept in the fridge for up to three days.