You will find me to be a huge fan of puff pastry. It’s an indulgent treat to me…all those buttery, flaky layers that just melt in your mouth almost immediately upon entering it. It’s can be used in so many different ways, and also makes for the base of a last minute appetizer or sweet treat when you need one. I usually always have a sheet or two in the freezer for this very reason. I’ve been making tomato tarts for years now. They could not be simpler. I mean, you really can’t go wrong with the tried and true tomato, basil and mozzarella combo on pretty much anything. The challenge for me with that combo using puff pastry, though, is that the bottom of the crust seemed to always turn soggy from the tomatoes breaking down while baking. So I played around with different cheese on the crust prior to the tomatoes and found that the best crust texture came when I sprinkled parmesan cheese all over the bottom of the crust, baked it for about ten minutes, then added the tomatoes and other toppings for the second half of baking. This way is a winner!
For this tart, I decided to also add in asparagus, goat cheese, and thyme. I never used to be a fan of goat cheese. It seemed gamey to me in my earlier years. I now find it to be an amazing compliment to certain foods, especially sweet ones like beets, sweet potatoes, and sweet tomatoes. Just the ever so slight addition of it on this tart kicks up the flavor a notch. And I like that it’s a little off the beaten path for a tomato tart.
So, to make this tart I thawed and slightly rolled out the puff pastry square with a rolling pin. Next, I sprinkled parmesan cheese all over the crust. I removed the stems from the asparagus and laid them all side by side across the tart leaving about a half inch border. I then brushed the border with egg wash and baked for the 10 minutes. While the tart was baking I cut all shapes and sizes of the heirlooms I found at the market. So beautiful!!! After ten minutes I took the tart out and placed the tomatoes all around on top of the asparagus. I sprinkled the goat cheese, thyme, and a little extra parm all around and put it back in to back for another 10-15 minutes. The result…an amazingly fresh, flavorful, and gorgeous tart easy to please a crowd. And I wish I had had one to share it with because boy was it delicious! And lucky for me I had a bottle of white in the fridge to pair it with…highly recommended. ENJOY!
- 1 sheet of puff pastry, thawed
- 1 medium sized bunch of asparagus (16-18 stalks), woodsy ends removed
- 1¼ cups grated parmesan cheese, divided
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 pound Heirloom tomatoes, all shapes and sizes, sliced
- 3 ounces goat cheese
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Use a rolling pin to just slightly roll out the puff pastry as evenly as possible.
- Evenly sprinkle ¾ cup of the parmesan cheese around the pastry leaving a half inch border, and lay the asparagus stalks side by side all the way across. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, and brush the edges with the egg wash. Bake for 10 minutes.
- Remove tart from oven and place the tomato slices all over the asparagus. Sprinkle with the goat cheese and parmesan as evenly as possible. Sprinkle the thyme leaves over top and season again with salt and pepper to taste.
- Bake for another 10-15 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown and cooked through. ENJOY!