Thursday, May 17, 2012

Potato and Asparagus Tart with Gruyere

2 to 3 red potatoes, washed and sliced into rounds, medium thin
Olive oil
Kosher salt
1 ½ pounds asparagus spears, washed, thick woody ends removed
1 shallot, sliced thin
8 ounces filo pastry
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 ½ cups Gruyere cheese, shredded
1 (8-ounce) container heavy cream
1 tablespoon flour
3 large eggs
1 tablespoon Greek seasoning or see my *Greek Seasoning Recipe below*


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Place sliced potatoes in a dish a sprinkle with olive oil and lightly with salt. Toss to coat. Arrange on plate and microwave until fork tender for 3 to 4 minutes or longer, depending on your microwave. Work in batches, if need be.

Snap off the end of one asparagus spear. Lay that spear along side the others and use it for a guide to cut the other ends off with a knife. Where ever it naturally snaps off will be the woody part of the stem.

While potatoes are cooking, add a teaspoon oil to a sauté pan and cook asparagus and shallots until just limp. This dish does not cook for a long time, so it is a must to

In a casserole dish, layer the filo pastry sheets in the dish and brush them with melted butter between each layer. Brush the top of the last layer with butter, as well. Do nothing with the pastry edges until all ingredients are in the dish. The pastry need to be about 6 sheets thick.

Using even amounts for layers, work fast to keep dough from drying, add a layer of potato slices, a layer of cheese and top with a layer of asparagus. You can cut your asparagus into smaller pieces or not. It’s up to you. Continue to layer the dish in this order until all ingredients have been used.

Cover with a wet paper towel while you make the egg custard. In a bowl, whisk cream and flour until smooth. Whisk in eggs and Greek seasoning. Pour into tart. Try not to over fill. Tuck pastry ends under all the way around and pinch between your index and middle finger to flute.

Set casserole dish on a sheet pan and place in the oven and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until lightly golden brown. Check custard filling for doneness. Allow to cool and set up for about 15 minutes, un-refrigerated. Serve pie slices with your favorite soup or salad.

California Girl’s Greek Seasoning
Makes about ½ cup of spice mix
3 teaspoons salt  1 ½ teaspoons black pepper3 teaspoons garlic powder  3 teaspoons onion powder 3 teaspoons dried parsley, finely crushed 1 ½ teaspoons dried oregano, finely crushed 1 ½ teaspoons dried basil, finely crushed1 ½ teaspoons dried rosemary, finely crushed 1 ½ teaspoons dried thyme, finely crushed  1 ½ teaspoons fennel seed, crushed 1 ½ teaspoons marjoram leaves, crushed 1 ½ teaspoons dried mint, crushed 
Combine all ingredients in a bowl.
Store in a labeled airtight container.
Use in soups, stews, chicken, beef, lamb, turkey, casseroles, eggs.

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