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Asparagus Ricotta Tart - total time 45 minutes

Spring hasn't officially started yet, but it is certainly starting to feel like Spring (or at least I am ready for it to feel like Spring).  My snowdrops and crocus are starting to bloom.  Daffodils and tulips were actually trying to come up all winter (except when they were buried under snow for a while), but they are growing leaps and bounds now.  I can see the glimmer of yellow petals ready to emerge (daffodils are my favorite flowers and I have hundreds planted).  Along with all these spring flowers come asparagus spears also sprouting up in the garden.
While asparagus is definitely delicious on its own either steamed or sauteed in butter, this little tart has a flaky crust, creamy center, and the asparagus and lemon flavor taste like springtime.

20 asparagus stalks
1 cup ricotta
1 sheet puff pastry, thawed
.25 cup parm
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 egg
.25 cup cream
salt and pepper

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Roll out puff pastry into tart pan (if you don't have one, use a parchment-lined baking sheet like I did).  If you have pie weights, spread them over the puff pastry to keep it from puffing.  Otherwise, place a dish on top of the pastry after it has baked for ten minutes to flatten the crust.
2.  While pastry is baking, remove woody ends from asparagus and steam for five minutes.
3.  Combine ricotta, cream, lemon juice, egg, salt, and pepper in small mixing bowl.  Spread creamy mixture over the bottom of the tart crust.  Lay asparagus lengthwise into the creamy mixture.  Top with shredded parm.
4.  Bake for 20 minutes.  Allow to rest for at least five minutes.  Enjoy!


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