Story and photos by Karyl Henry, KarylsKulinaryKrusade.com
I love to entertain, but I don’t do it nearly enough. Most of my friends in town have kids, and my house is not kid-friendly, so when there is a party it is usually at someone else’s home. But whether the party is at my house or not, I always like to share my favorite appetizers. Spinach and Bacon Stuffed Mushrooms is one of the most popular dishes with my friends. I took Bacon Cranberry Goat Cheese Truffles to a friend’s holiday party for a taste-test, and they were gone in minutes. For a fun twist on the classic appetizers, I make Pigs in an Everything Blanket and I can eat them by the dozen.
I’ve recently started using puff pastry. It’s light, versatile, and has so many glorious layers that turn golden brown when baked. A few months ago I created Vegetarian Chorizo Taco Puff Pastry Bites.
As we head into spring, I’m trying to use ingredients that reflect the season. Asparagus can be found year-round, but spring asparagus has more delicate, thin stalks. Lemon is another year-round ingredient, but adding lemon just brightens up any dish. So I created Asparagus Prosciutto Puff Pastry.
Oh my goodness, Asparagus Prosciutto Puff Pastry is amazing. The puff pastry expands and gets so light and delicate. The asparagus is tender, the sun-dried tomatoes add a nice tart bite, and the cheese adds a wonderful savory flavor to the mix.
INGREDIENTS FOR ASPARAGUS PROSCIUTTO PUFF PASTRY ROLL
- Puff pastry, thawed
- Thinly sliced prosciutto
- Ricotta cheese (I use whole milk)
- Parmesan cheese
- Lemon juice
- Sun-dried Tomatoes (I use the variety in oil)
- Thin asparagus spears
- Seasoning: salt, black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, red pepper flakes
KEYS TO THE PERFECT ASPARAGUS PROSCIUTTO PUFF PASTRY
Can you make your own puff pastry? Probably. Am I going to do that? That’s just crazy talk. I use packages from the frozen food aisle in the grocery store.
- Puff pastry sheets will thaw at room temperature in about 40 minutes. They’re ready to go when you can unfold them easily.
- Use fresh lemon juice! Lemons are inexpensive, and there is no comparison between fresh and bottled.
- Asparagus is bland on its own, so don’t forget the seasoning. I drizzle the asparagus with Avocado Oil and toss with the seasoning mix.
- Prosciutto is a glorious Italian cured ham. It has a salty, mild bite, and is sold in very thin slices. It’s not cheap, but a little goes a long way with Asparagus Prosciutto Puff Pastry. You can find prosciutto in most grocery stores at the deli counter, and some higher end groceries will also have it in the packaged meat section.
- I use the sun-dried tomatoes packaged in oil because I think it adds more flavor.
TO ROLL OR NOT TO ROLL ASPARAGUS PROSCUITTO PUFF PASTRY?
I couldn’t decide whether or not to roll the Asparagus Prosciutto Puff Pastry, so I tested them both ways. As an appetizer, they are better rolled because the final product is easier to hold and bite.
- Unfold each puff pastry into a large sheet. I use a Pizza Cutter to cut the puff pastry, which works better than a knife.
- Cut along the folds to create three strips, and then cut each strip in half for six total pieces per sheet.
- Add the filling at the bottom of each pastry piece: ricotta mixture, asparagus, sun-dried tomatoes, and then prosciutto. Roll the pastry pieces from the bottom up.
- Brush egg wash over all 3 visible sides of the Asparagus Prosciutto Puff Pastry.
- Line a baking sheet with Parchment Paper, and bake until golden brown.
I know you want to dig right in, but wait just a few minutes because the filling will be scorching hot. Even after 20 minutes, the insides are still quite hot.
What I love about Asparagus Prosciutto Puff Pastry is that it’s a great appetizer all year round. It’s elegant enough for a dinner party or holiday entertaining, but easy enough to make for tailgating or a just-because house party. I can’t wait to share this one with family and friends.
Asparagus Prosciutto Puff Pastry from KarylsKulinaryKrusade.com
Servings: 12 rolls
- 2 puff pastry sheets, thawed
- 24 thin asparagus spears, hard ends removed, and each spear cut into 2 pieces
- 2 Tablespoons sundried tomatoes in oil, chopped
- 4 slices prosciutto, torn into small pieces
- 1/2 cup ricotta cheese
- 1/4 cup fresh-grated parmesan cheese
- Juice and zest of 1 lemon
- 1/2 Tablespoon avocado oil
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh-cracked black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 large egg
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a bowl, add ricotta, parmesan, pepper, plus juice and zest of lemon. Mix well and set aside.
- In another bowl, add asparagus and drizzle with avocado oil. Toss with salt, onion powder, garlic powder, and red pepper flakes. Set aside.
- Unfold puff pastry sheets. Using a cookie cutter, cut along the folds to create 6 total strips. Cut each strip in half, for 12 total pieces.
- Fill each puff pastry piece at the bottom of each pastry piece, spreading fillings evenly between all 12 pieces. Layer with ricotta mixture (about 1 Tablespoon each), asparagus spears, sun-dried tomatoes, and prosciutto.
- Starting at the bottom of each piece, roll pastry all the way up and lay open side down on parchment paper.
- Whisk egg with 1 Tablespoon of water to create an egg wash. Brush all visible sides of puff pastry.
- Bake for about 15 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from oven, and allow to rest for about 5 minutes. WARNING: Filling will be extremely hot!