Monday, May 06, 2019

It's asparagus season!

Spring is when the local asparagus is available in the markets around us. I bought our first bunch three weeks ago, and I'll probably continue buying a bundle every Saturday until there is no more. This is one of the dishes we make every year with our local white spears.

An annual spring favorite: white asparagus and ham bundles baked in a cheesy custard.

First, I steam the spears until they're pretty much done. Then I wrap a few of them in a slice of ham, four times. I make my standard pâte brisée (short crust) and blind bake it to give it a head start. Next, I make a custard with eggs, cream, and finely grated Parmesan cheese. After pouring the custard into the shell, I line the asparagus/ham bundles on top and bake the tarte until the custard is set.

We also eat asparagus as a side dish, either warm with butter or olive oil, or as a salad with vinaigrette or ranch style dressing. It's a nice seasonal vegetable that's grown right around here. The guy that grows and sells strawberries at the Saint-Aignan market is the one who also grows and sells the asparagus. Well, his son has taken over the farming operation; he works the markets.

4 comments:

  1. Didn't you also bake the same dish with endives instead of asparagus? i remember the one with asparagus as extremely yummy.

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  2. These are gorgeous and I'll bet taste even better. One year at Berkeley's annual dinner, Alice Waters was honored and insisted on running the show -- down to the table centerpieces, which were unattractive piles of vegetables. It was asparagus season and EVERY DISH included asparagus. After dinner, the main hall reeked from the asaparagus aroma wafting out of the mens' room!

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  3. I look forward to seeing this tart on your blog every year! Spring would not be Spring without it!

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