April 25, 2012
Puff Pastry Appetizers with Asparagus and Cream Cheese Filling
Photo by John Ivanko
Wrap asparagus spears in puff pastry dough, add a little cream cheese, and you’ve got a delicious way to celebrate an early garden harvest.

As many of you know, record temperatures were set across many parts of the United States this March, evidence of a changing environment. We’re adapting on our farm, Inn Serendipity, by producing more renewable energy and savoring fresh food from our gardens more months of the year.

Because you too are living out environmental responsibility by driving less, producing more renewable energy, growing more of your own food (or purchasing it locally), or preparing meals in your own kitchens, you might as well join us in savoring the abundance of an early harvest, perhaps with this recipe for Puff Pastry Appetizers with Asparagus and Cream Cheese Filling.

This winter’s unseasonably warm weather gave a sudden boost to our growing fields, sending up rhubarb and asparagus early—and shifting us into overdrive in our gardens. Nearly all of our spring crops are already in the ground. If you, like us, received asparagus in early April (or even sooner), then this delicious recipe is a perfect pre-Mother’s Day treat or attractive brunch item.

If you’re under a time crunch, you can use to a package of frozen puff pastry dough from the grocery store, but if you have more time, check out the puff pastry recipe in our book Farmstead Chef.

Recipe: Puff Pastry Appetizers with Asparagus and Cream Cheese Filling

Yield: 24 pieces

Ingredients

  • 1 pound fresh asparagus spears, trimmed
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 17½ package puff pastry dough
  • 1 egg

Preparation
Place whole asparagus in a steamer basket over (but not touching) boiling water. Cover and reduce heat. Steam 5 to 8 minutes until asparagus is tender but not mushy

In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese and salt until well-blended.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out pastry dough into three rectangles, approximately 12 by 6 inches. Spread cream cheese mixture lengthwise over half of dough to about 1/2 inch from edge. Arrange three asparagus spears lengthwise in a single layer over cream cheese. Brush edge of dough with egg. Fold dough over filling, and seal edges. Cover and refrigerate 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Lightly oil baking sheet. Cut pastries widthwise into 1-inch pieces, and place 1 inch apart sheet. Brush pastries with remaining egg. Bake 8 to 12 minutes or until golden brown.

Serve warm, slicing wedges from the loaf and arranging them on a platter.

Savoring the good life,

John and Lisa's Signatures

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