Inspired by ingredients from far-flung places, Sarah Graham relishes the chance to be adventurous in the kitchen. She’s a food blogger (afoodieliveshere.com) and the author of the cookbooks ‘bitten’ and ‘smitten.'(both Struik Lifestyle)
- 3T butter
- 4 sheets phyllo pastry
- 2 x 100g rolls goats’ cheese
- 12 asparagus spears
- juice of half a lemon
- 12 strips Parma ham (or smoked salmon, if you prefer)
- olive oil, for drizzling
- salt and freshly-ground black pepper, to taste
- few sprigs fresh thyme, for garnish
1. Preheat the oven to 200°C. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
2. Melt the butter in the microwave (about 30 seconds) and then brush it on each sheet of pastry, before folding it in half and then in half again to make a 4-layered rectangle. Place the rectangles on the tray.
3. Crumble the goats’ cheese over the pastry and add three asparagus spears to each one.
4. Bake for 12–15 minutes until the pastry is golden.
5. Remove the tartlets from the oven, sprinkle each one with a little lemon juice, top with the Parma ham and a drizzle of olive oil. Add a sprinkling of salt and pepper and garnish with a few leaves and a sprig of thyme. Serve immediately.
Cook’s tip: If you’re entertaining, you can assemble these pastries up to Step 3 a couple of hours beforehand; then cover and set them aside. When your guests arrive, just pop them in the oven and dress them with the Parma ham and other remaining ingredients and they’ll be ready in a jiffy.
This recipe serves 4 as a starter.