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Asparagus Gruyere Tart    (printer friendly)

Asparagus Gruyere TartFlour, for work surface
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed according to package instructions
5 1/2 ounces (2 cups) Gruyere cheese, shredded
1 1/2 pounds thin or medium thick asparagus, rinsed and thoroughly dried
1 tablespoon olive oil
Salt and pepper

1. Preheat oven to 400. On a floured surface, roll the puff pastry into a 16-by-10-inch rectangle. Trim uneven edges (a pizza cutter works best!). Place pastry on a baking sheet. With a sharp knife, lightly score pastry dough 1 inch in from the edges to mark a rectangle **DO NOT CUT ALL THE WAY THROUGH THE PASTRY**. Using a fork, pierce dough inside the markings at 1/2-inch intervals. This will make the edges rise up and form a border. Bake until golden, about 15 minutes.

2. Remove pastry shell from oven, and sprinkle with Gruyere. (You may need to press down center part so it's flat). Trim the bottoms of the asparagus spears to fit crosswise inside the tart shell; arrange in a single layer over Gruyere, alternating ends and tips. Brush with oil, and season with salt and pepper. Bake until spears are tender, 20 to 25 minutes. You may need to put tinfoil over the edges if the pastry gets too dark.

3. Remove from oven, transfer pastry to a rack and cool slightly before cutting. Delicious hot or even at room temp.