The first few days of spring when I’m woken by bird song are my sign to head down to the allotment and see how it’s fared over winter. I first check the pond to see if I have any tadpoles that will grow up to keep pests at bay for me, then I hoe away any weeds that have crept up over the last few months. Every year that first visit gives me such a feeling of peacefulness and promise, raking over the beds that I had prepared in late winter fills me with a sense of calm, clearing all busy thoughts from my mind, then getting creative and planning what I’m going to grow this year and designing the layout of the beds. First in, this season is peas to harvest as pea shoots, which I can pick weekly until June.

This recipe takes pea shoots that are in abundance, viola (also popping up now at the allotment) and asparagus, a spring feast!

 

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Asparagus and Gruyere Tart for The Supper Club
Course Mains, Salad
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings
people
Ingredients
Asparagus Tart
  • 1 bunch asparagus
  • 1 roll puff pastry
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 50 g gruyere cheese, grated
  • 25 g mozerella cheese, grated
  • 25 cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 egg, beaten
Salad Dressing
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp Lemon Juice
  • 1 small bunch mint leaves, finely chopped
Salad
  • 80 g pea shoots
  • 1 small handful edible flowers
Course Mains, Salad
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings
people
Ingredients
Asparagus Tart
  • 1 bunch asparagus
  • 1 roll puff pastry
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 50 g gruyere cheese, grated
  • 25 g mozerella cheese, grated
  • 25 cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 egg, beaten
Salad Dressing
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp Lemon Juice
  • 1 small bunch mint leaves, finely chopped
Salad
  • 80 g pea shoots
  • 1 small handful edible flowers
Instructions
  1. Asparagus & Gruyere Tart
  2. Take the pastry out of the fridge and leave to settle so that it doesn't crack when you unroll it.
  3. Preheat the fan oven to 180c.
  4. Fill a large saucepan with water and boil.
  5. While the water is heating up, break the woody ends off the asparagus and discard.
  6. Par-boil the asparagus for 3 minutes.
  7. While the asparagus is cooking, fill a large bowl with some ice and cold water.
  8. Drain the asparagus and plunge it into the ice water to stop it cooking and retain it's colour.
  9. Unroll the pastry onto a parchment lined baking tray and cut out a circle, then score 1 cm inside the edge to create a circle within the pastry.
  10. Prong with a fork over the insides of the circle to stop the insides puffing up when cooking.
  11. Brush the insides of the tart with a little dijon mustard and sprinkle the cheeses over the circle.
  12. Dry the asparagus on a clean tea towel or kitchen roll.
  13. Use a peeler to shave the asparagus into fine strips, setting the outside strips aside to use in the salad dressing.
  14. Arrange the asparagus on the tart.
  15. Brush the edges of tarts with the egg wash.
  16. Bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes until the cheese has melted and the pastry is golden.
  17. While the tart is baking, whisk all the dressing ingredients together and season to taste.
  18. Arrange the tart and pea shoots on plates and top with the dressing and edible flowers.
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