Recipe: Leek and Asparagus Tart

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In last week’s farmers market loot, I talked about a supper with pork roast and a leek tart. I’m happy to report this worked out very well indeed. I’ll share the recipes in two posts. First up, Leek and Asparagus Tart.

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Leek and Asparagus Tart

1 store-bought puff pastry
1 bunch spring leeks (4 to 6 small or subsitute 1 to 2 large from the grocery)
1 bunch asapagus
2 tablespoons butter
Salt and pepper
1/3 cup sheep’s milk ricotta cheese
2 eggs

Preheat oven to 375. Roll out puff pastry to about 16 inches by 8 inches — a little less than the size of a sheet pan. Prick it all over with a fork, except for the one inch around the edge. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until it’s light yellow but not golden. When you remove the pastry from the oven, use your hands or a spatula to press down any parts that still have air, except for the edge, of course.

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Meanwhile, clean and trim asparagus and leeks. They don’t have to be bite-sized, but I’d cut the asparagus in half at least. If you have spring leeks, reserve the green leafy tips.

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Heat 1 tablespoon butter over medium heat in a medium saute pan. Add leeks and salt and pepper and saute until brown but not completely caramelized, about 5 minutes.

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Remove and reserve the leeks. Add another tablespoon butter and saute the asparagus bottoms with salt and pepper. Saute until brown but not completely caramelized, about 5 minutes. Remove and reserve with leeks. Add asparagus tops and salt and pepper and saute until brown, about 3 to 4 minutes. Reserve with the other asparagus and leeks.
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Turn heat to high and sear the green tips of the leeks until crispy, about 2 minutes.

Whisk ricotta and eggs in a bowl so they are combined but the ricotta is still lumpy.
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Place leeks and asparagus in the half-cooked puff pastry, arranging the vegetables so each piece gets an equal amount of both. Pour ricotta and egg mixture over it, moving it around with your hands if necessary to coat the vegetables evenly.

Bake in 375 degree oven for about 30 minutes, until the pastry is golden brown and the ricotta egg mixture is bubbling.

Let cool slightly and serve in wedges.

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

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About Author

Liz Johnson is content strategist for The Journal News and lohud.com, and the founding editor of lohudfood, formerly know as Small Bites. As food editor, she won awards from the New York News Publishers Association, the Association of Food Journalists and the Associated Press. She lives in Nyack with her husband and daughter on a tiny suburban lot they call their farm — with fruit trees, an herb garden, and a yardful of lettuce, tomatoes, onions, shallots, cucumbers, zucchini, radishes, cabbage, peppers, Brussels sprouts and carrots and four big blueberry bushes.

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