Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

QUICK FIX

Spring Puff

June 03, 1998|CHARITY FERREIRA | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

This is the time of year when it feels good to dine on lots of vegetables that can be prepared with a minimum of fuss.

Frozen puff pastry dough, available in the freezer or refrigerated section of supermarkets, is easy to work with and versatile. It can be the basis for any number of sweet and savory toppings, such as this savory tart in which thin asparagus spears are roasted on a bed of onions and dry, aged Jack cheese with a few piquant aromatics--a hint of orange zest, tarragon and a few dry-cured black olives.

While the tart bakes, toss together a salad and slice some fresh strawberries for dessert.

Ferreira, a former Times Food section intern, is a pastry chef at Greens in San Francisco.

MENU (30 MINUTES OR LESS)

Asparagus and Onion Tart

Butter Lettuce and Radish Salad With Orange Vinaigrette

Strawberries

ASPARAGUS AND ONION TART (VEGETARIAN)

1 onion, preferably sweet, thinly sliced

3 teaspoons olive oil

Salt, pepper

1 sheet puff pastry dough

1 cup grated dry, aged Jack cheese

1 teaspoon minced orange zest

1 teaspoon chopped tarragon

1 bunch thin asparagus spears, tough stem ends trimmed and discarded

1/4 cup pitted, dry-cured black olives

Another dry cheese, such as Gruyere or Parmesan, may be substituted for the Jack.

Saute onion in 2 teaspoons olive oil over medium-low heat until slightly softened, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Unfold puff pastry and place on baking sheet. Sprinkle with cheese, leaving 1/2-inch rim of uncovered dough around sides. Top cheese with sauteed onions. Sprinkle with minced orange zest and chopped tarragon.

Place asparagus spears in row over onions, alternating tips and ends. Tuck olives between asparagus spears. Brush stalks with remaining 1 teaspoon oil and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Fold up edges of pastry to create rim around tart. Bake at 400 degrees until pastry is puffed up and golden brown, 18 to 20 minutes.

4 servings. Each serving:

357 calories; 670 mg sodium; 19 mg cholesterol; 29 grams fat; 28 grams carbohydrates; 12 grams protein; 0.94 gram fiber.

BUTTER LETTUCE SALAD WITH RADISHES AND ORANGE VINAIGRETTE

1 small bunch radishes, thinly sliced

1 head butter lettuce

2 tablespoons orange juice

1/2 teaspoon minced orange zest

1 teaspoon white wine vinegar

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 1/2 tablespoons light olive oil

Toss together radishes and lettuce.

Combine orange juice and zest, vinegar and salt in small bowl. Whisk in oil. Pour over salad and lightly toss.

4 servings. Each serving:

84 calories; 150 mg sodium; 0 cholesterol; 9 grams fat; 2 grams carbohydrates; 1 gram protein; 0.19 gram fiber.

INGREDIENYS

SHOPPING LIST

1 bunch thin asparagus

3 ounces dry, aged Jack cheese

1 (17 1/2-ounce) package frozen puff pastry dough

1 head butter lettuce

1/2 pint dry-cured black olives

1 bunch radishes

2 pints strawberries

1 bunch tarragon

STAPLES

Olive oil

Light olive oil

Onion

Orange

Pepper

Salt

White wine vinegar

COUNTDOWN

30 minutes before: Preheat oven. Slice onion and begin sauteing. Grate cheese.

25 minutes before: Zest orange. Chop tarragon. Trim asparagus.

20 minutes before: Assemble tart and begin baking.

18 minutes before: Wash lettuce. Slice radishes.

13 minutes before: Juice orange and make vinaigrette.

8 minutes before. Slice strawberries.

5 minutes before: Toss salad.

Just before serving: Remove tart and serve with salad.

* Placemats and napkins from William-Sonoma, Pasadena

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|