Asparagus Gruyère Tart

© 2012

Baby Lady & I love veggies. If it weren’t for the children, we would eat primarily a vegetarian (not vegan) diet. This dish is a show stopper if you like asparagus. If you don’t, well this dish aint your cup of tea but your guests will love it. You will like this dish because it is exceptionally versatile. It can be served for breakfast, as an appetizer or as a side dish with dinner. It is wonderfully flavorful and definitely worth a try.

I have been building a computer cookbook for a few years now and only focused on photos of final products so I don’t have photos of the process for all dishes, like this one. As we repeat dishes we will update the photos to show the steps. In the meantime, don’t let the lack of prep photos deter you from giving this a try.

Cooking Time 50 minutes; Serves 8


Black Pepper and Sour Cream Pastry Dough

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3/4 teaspoon sugar
  • 11/4 sticks (10 tablespoons) cold unsalted butter, cut into bits
  • 1/3 cup cold vegetable shortening
  • 3 tablespoons sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons ice water


  • 3 pounds thick white or green asparagus, trimmed to 5 inches and peeled
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt plus additional for sprinkling
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 cup finely grated Gruyère
  • 1 oz Prosciutto finely minced


For the Crust

Blend together flour, salt, pepper, sugar, butter, and shortening with your fingertips or a pastry blender until most of mixture resembles coarse meal with remainder in small (roughly pea-size) lumps.

Stir together sour cream and ice water, then stir into dough with a fork until incorporated. Gather dough into a ball.

Flatten dough into a 6-inch square on a lightly floured surface. Roll out into a roughly 18- by 6-inch rectangle and fold into thirds (like a letter) to form a 6-inch square.

Turn dough so an open-ended side is nearest you, then roll out dough into an 18- by 6-inch rectangle again, dusting work surface with flour as necessary. Fold into thirds same as above.

Repeat rolling and folding 1 more time, then chill dough, wrapped in plastic wrap, at least 1 hour.

Make crust: Roll out pastry dough on a floured surface into a 15 1/2-inch round. Transfer to tart pan by rolling dough around rolling pin and unrolling it across pan. Trim. Prick bottom of shell all over with a fork and chill until firm, at least 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375 F.

Line 12 inch tart pan with foil and fill with pie weights or raw rice. Bake in middle of oven until sides are firm, about 20 minutes. Remove foil and weights carefully and bake shell until golden, about 10 minutes more, then cool.

For the Filling

Prepare filling while shell cools.  Layer asparagus on a sheet pan, sprinkling each layer with kosher salt to taste. Roast at 375 F, about 8 minutes for green asparagus or 12 for white, remove from oven and set aside.

Whisk together cream, eggs, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, and nutmeg, then season lightly with pepper and add Prosciutto.  Pour custard evenly in tart shell.  Sprinkle custard with two thirds of cheese, then arrange spears in custard, tips out (like the spokes of a wheel). Sprinkle remaining cheese over top.

Bake tart in middle of oven until custard is set and golden brown, about 20 minutes.  Serve and enjoy.

© 2012

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