A Savory Tart Recipe for Spring: Asparagus Ricotta Burrata Crostata
As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Every culture that has both dairy and vegetables seems to work its way around eventually to the idea of a savory tart. Americans lean about equally on the Italian crostata and the French galette as excuses for our own tartlike behavior. I couldn’t be happier about that. And this heavily rhyming asparagus ricotta burrata crostata is a big reason why.
A rustic savory tart is eminently flexible — that’s kinda the point. You can swap ingredients in and out as you see fit. But boy, we really love this combination.A few times a year, I go way deep into savory tart mode. Is that a thing? Feels like it must be. It’s a chef’s primal urge to take perfectly innocent ingredients — seasonal vegetables, all of the kinds of all of the cheese — and nestle them in crisp, buttery pastry. Let’s roll with that.
Savory tarts to the rescue
During farmers’ market season every year, you’re bound to end up with a few instances of fridge overload. Savory tarts are up there with pasta and frittatas on the list of pleasing ways to pass off overabundance as a last-minute party. Sure, making a savory tart crust is a little bit more of a pain in the ass than scrambling a dozen eggs or boiling a pound of pasta. But.
Making a rustic tart
If you have a food processor, it only takes a few minutes of pulsing time and then about an hour of chill time in the fridge, during which you can read a good book or sip on an Aperol Spritz or, ideally, both. I think tart crusts require a little bit of self-trust and bravery, too, if we’re being perfectly honest. A novel and an aperitif can help with that, too. Or — you know — just refer to this post about how to make a savory tart dough.
- 2 large leeks
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 recipe savory tart dough
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 1/2 cups fresh whole-milk ricotta
- 1/2 cup pecorino romano cheese, divided
- About 1/2 pound pencil-thin asparagus
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon heavy cream or milk
- 4 ounces burrata cheese
- Balsamic glaze, for drizzling
- Flaky sea salt, such as Maldon, for sprinkling
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat oven to 400° F with a rack in the center.
- Slice off and discard roots and dark green parts from leeks. Slice white and light green parts in half lengthwise and then cut each length crosswise into thin half-moons. Wash and dry very well in a salad spinner to remove all grit.
- Melt butter over medium heat in a medium nonstick skillet. Add leeks and a good pinch of salt and cook, stirring frequently, until tender, about 5 minutes. Adjust heat if necessary to prevent browning.
- After rolling out the dough as directed in the savory tart dough recipe, brush it with the olive oil, leaving a 1 1/2-inch border around the outside. (In a few minutes you'll fold this part over to form a ring of crust around the ingredients.)
- Spread the ricotta evenly over the dough, still leaving a plain 1 1/2-inch border as you add all ingredients. Sprinkle half the pecorino evenly over ricotta. Lay asparagus over cheeses. (See note if your asparagus aren't pencil-thin). Sprinkle with remaining pecorino.
- Working in 6 to 8 sections, fold the outer ring of dough over the filling to form a crust, pressing gently to adhere the sections together. I like to use the parchment paper to lift and press the dough rather than handling it directly, especially if it's gotten a little soft. In any case, don't worry about making it perfect. Rustic is charming, you hear?
- In a small bowl, beat together the egg with the milk or cream. Brush egg wash over outer ring of crust.
- Bake for 40 minutes, until nicely browned.
- While tart is hot, cut or tear burrata into pieces and distribute over filling. Drizzle with balsamic glaze and sprinkle with flaky salt and freshly ground black pepper.
- Cut into wedges and serve warm or at room temperature.
If you can't find extremely thin asparagus or just prefer thicker spears, partially cook them before adding to the tart by boiling for two minutes or so in well salted water. Dry well, then proceed with directions above.