Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Puff Pastry Tarts Three Ways from Martha Stewart

Martha Stewart Puff Pastry Tart Harissa and Goat Cheese, Asparagus and Gruyere, or Potato and Rosemary (Or All Three)

Do you need a super easy go-to appetizer? Are you stressing about your pre-dinner bites? Are you sick of cheese and crackers (okay, that's blasphemy)?  I gotta say, it's as simple as having some frozen puff pastry on hand, because Martha Stewart is to the rescue. Again. We would expect no less from the queen of entertaining.

Martha Stewart Puff Pastry Tart Harissa and Goat Cheese, Asparagus and Gruyere, or Potato and Rosemary (Or All Three)

While this would be the perfect appetizer for a Mexico-Italy soccer match up in the World Cup, I can also vouch for its viability in an American Superbowl game this past February. Since I don't particularly care about the Superbowl (and somehow do decidedly care more about the World Cup), I do try to ensure that the food is fantastic on that wintry Sunday evening. Enter Puff Pastry Tart Three Ways.

Martha Stewart Puff Pastry Tart Harissa and Goat Cheese, Asparagus and Gruyere, or Potato and Rosemary (Or All Three)

Sure, you could make just one, but this is perfect as a combination piece because everyone can have a little of everything. And it really does look quite striking all together. And if you cut it into even smaller bites, you can spread the love even further.  

Martha Stewart Puff Pastry Tart Harissa and Goat Cheese, Asparagus and Gruyere, or Potato and Rosemary (Or All Three)

It does take a tiny bit of finagling (cook everything for 15 minutes and then add the cheeses; cook for 5 minutes more), but I think we can all handle it. And don't ask me about amounts. I just messed around with all of my amounts when I cooked it.  Here was my rule of thumb: make enough ingredients to give the appearance of abundance on the tart.

Martha Stewart Puff Pastry Tart Harissa and Goat Cheese, Asparagus and Gruyere, or Potato and Rosemary (Or All Three)

Which takes me to my golden rule of appetizers as taught to me by an English teacher who once moonlit as a caterer--just make sure everything on a platter, tray, bowl, or plate looks abundant and overflowing, and your next dinner party will go off without a hitch. Be it a football (American or otherwise) match, holiday party, or just cocktails with friends. And this is the puff pastry to do the trick.

Martha Stewart Puff Pastry Tart Harissa and Goat Cheese, Asparagus and Gruyere, or Potato and Rosemary (Or All Three)


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Puff Pastry Tarts Three Ways: Harissa and Goat Cheese, Asparagus and Gruyere, or Potato and Rosemary (Or All Three)

Adapted from Martha Stewart's Appetizers

Harissa and Goat Cheese

Yield
Serves 4

Ingredients
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, preferably all-butter, thawed
All-purpose flour, for dusting
2 Tbsp harissa
2 Tbsp olive oil
4 ounces fresh goat cheese, crumbled
Sea salt
Mint and parsley leaves

Instructions
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Lay pastry sheet on a lightly-floured surface and roll out into a 10-x-16 inch rectangle. Trim the edges with a sharp knife. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Use a knife to score a 1-inch border around the pastry (do not cut all the way through), then pierce inside the markings at ½-inch intervals with a fork.

2.  In a small bowl, mix the harissa paste with oil. Spread inside border.

3.  Bake until crust is golden, about 15 minutes. Top with goat cheese, and bake 5 minutes more. Serve warm, sprinkled with sea salt and herbs.

Asparagus and Gruyere

Yield
Serves 4

Ingredients
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, preferably all-butter, thawed
All-purpose flour, for dusting
1½ pounds asparagus
1 Tbsp olive oil
6 ounces Gruyere cheese, shredded
Salt and pepper

Instructions
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Lay pastry sheet on a lightly-floured surface and roll out into a 10-x-16 inch rectangle. Trim the edges with a sharp knife. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Use a knife to score a 1-inch border around the pastry (do not cut all the way through), then pierce inside the markings at ½-inch intervals with a fork.

2.  Trim asparagus spears to fit inside the border, and then arrange the asparagus in a single layer atop the tart. Brush with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Bake about 15 minutes.

4. Remove from oven, and sprinkle the asparagus with cheese. Bake until cheese is melted and browned, about 5 minutes.


Potato and Rosemary

Yield
Serves 4

Ingredients
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, preferably all-butter, thawed
All-purpose flour, for dusting
1 Yukon Gold potato (unpeeled), very thinly sliced
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp fresh rosemary
Salt and pepper

Instructions
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Lay pastry sheet on a lightly-floured surface and roll out into a 10-x-16 inch rectangle. Trim the edges with a sharp knife. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Use a knife to score a 1-inch border around the pastry (do not cut all the way through), then pierce inside the markings at ½-inch intervals with a fork.

2.  In a small bowl, toss the potato slices with oil, rosemary, and generous amounts of salt and pepper. Arrange evenly over the pastry.

3.  Bake until crust is golden, about 20 minutes. Drizzle with more oil, and serve warm.

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