Saturday, April 28, 2012

Morel Mushroom/Asparagus Tartlets

 Thanks to Kelly for the morel mushrooms!!!
 Allow me to boast just a little...these little tartlets are absolutely delicious!  They are a bit time consuming but so worth the effort!
 We reside in a wooded area and used to find mushrooms galore but not any more and thankfully Kelly shared her bounty...bless her heart!
 The combination of ingredients is perfect and I would not change a thing in making them again!

Morel Mushroom/Asparagus Tartlets:

2 sheets puff pastry dough 
1 egg yolk, mixed with a tablespoon of water
2 cups morel, cleaned thoroughly
1 nice medium to large bunch asparagus
2-3 tablespoons whole black peppercorns
1 pint heavy cream
4 ounces Gruyere cheese, grated
Sea salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 heaping tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
1 heaping tablespoon fresh parsley
1 teaspoon tarragon, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh chives, chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter

Allow pastry to thaw for about twenty minutes.  On a lightly floured surface, roll each sheet to measure 8" x 10".  Cut into 5" circles (you will have some pastry remaining and you can make a few smaller tartlets or save for something else)
Puncture each circle at least 3-6 times.  Double over the outside edge to form a raised 1/2" crust.  Chill on parchment paper lined cookie sheet

Blanch the asparagus until tender, do not overcook.  Drain and rinse with ice cold water to stop the cooking.  Dry on paper towels.  Cut off the tips and reserve.  Dice remaining stems and reserve separately.

Steep heavy cream and whole black peppercorns for a good 10-12 minutes, being sure not to boil.

Saute mushrooms lightly in butter until tender.  Season with salt and pepper, to taste, along with 1/2 the thyme and tarragon.  Add the cream and simmer until the mixture is reduced by 1/4 (it will get a little thick)

Brush puff pastry with egg wash.
Bake in pre-heated oven for 15-20 minutes or until lightly browned and and raised.

Remove from oven and spoon mushroom mixture in the center of tartlets...arrange the asparagus tips around the edge of mixture in a circle.
Add diced stems in middle and then sprinkle with Gruyere.  Place back in oven and bake for an additional 7-9 minutes or until cheese is melted and golden.

Remove from oven and garnish with remaining herbs.
Serve promptly and enjoy~

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