Grilled Asparagus Tartines with Fresh Ricotta, Pesto and Scallions

You can’t pinch this blog – I’m wearing my St. Patrick’s Day green this week! There’s nothing especially Irish about these Grilled Asparagus Tartines with Fresh Ricotta, Pesto and Scallions, but they usher in spring with plenty of bright green color, crunchy texture and fresh flavor.

And, by the way, that’s homemade ricotta on there!

Ever since my mozzarella cheesemaking escapade I’ve been eager to try making ricotta. Everyone says it’s way better than the packaged stuff, and they were so right. The homemade ricotta actually tasted more like milk and less like salt compared to the kind I usually buy. Texture-wise, it was softer – closer to a really small-curd cottage cheese. A recipe for 5-minute ricotta I found on Serious Eats called for just milk, vinegar and salt – I couldn’t resist giving it a try. It doesn’t make much – just half a cup – but it’s enough to provide a creamy base for these terrific tartines.

This was the most fresh-tasting little sandwich snack I’ve had in a while. I made them in full sandwich size, but you could easily make a mini crostini version and serve them as green springtime appetizers. Enjoy!

Grilled Asparagus Tartines with Fresh Ricotta and Scallions


Grilled Asparagus Tartines with Fresh Ricotta, Pesto and Scallions

Prep time: 10 minutes | Cook time: 5 minutes | Total time: 10 minutes

Yield: 4 tartines


  • 1 pound asparagus
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • Coarse salt and pepper
  • 4 slices ciabatta or other crusty rustic bread
  • 1/4 cup basil pesto
  • 1/2 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1 scallion, chopped


  1. Heat the panini maker according to the manufacturer’s directions.
  2. Rinse the asparagus and break the ends off of each spear (if you hold onto each end and bend the spear it will naturally break in the right place). Discard the ends.
  3. In a large bowl, toss the asparagus in 2 teaspoons of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill the asparagus for about 3 minutes until they’re tender and grill marks appear.
  4. Drizzle another 2 teaspoons of the olive oil over the ciabatta slices and grill the bread until it’s toasted with grill marks, about 2 minutes.
  5. Spread about a tablespoon of pesto onto each slice of ciabatta. Spoon on a few tablespoons of ricotta and top it with grilled asparagus (you’ll have extra asparagus – you can save it to enjoy on its own, add it to a salad or pasta, or just make more tartines!) and a sprinkling of chopped scallions. Finish the tartines by drizzling the remaining 2 teaspoons of the olive oil over the top and grinding on a little black pepper.



KathyPanini Happy, online since 2008, is more than just a sandwich blog. Here, you'll find hundreds of my original panini recipes, my guide to choosing a panini press and a whole lot of other creative uses for the panini press.
~ Kathy Strahs
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  1. Amy wrote:

    After watching and tasting fresh ricotta at a Nancy Silverton cooking demo, I will never buy the store bought ricotta ever again. You’re right – it doesn’t make a lot…I usually double the recipe. This looks lovely 😀

    Posted 3.12.12 Reply
  2. Can’t wait to try this in asparagus season (we’re still a couple of months away here in the Northeast). How beautifully fresh it looks!

    Posted 3.12.12 Reply
  3. I’ve only made fresh ricotta once and it was so darn good! I love these additions here!

    Posted 3.12.12 Reply
  4. what a fabulous combination!

    Posted 3.12.12 Reply
  5. These look amazing!! We’re getting asparagus in our box of produce this week. I may have to change my menu plan to include these!! Thanks for sharing!

    Posted 3.12.12 Reply
  6. Ambika wrote:

    Absolutely love these tartines!! Gotto make them soon 🙂

    Posted 3.12.12 Reply
  7. Carolyn wrote:

    Those look wonderful…so glad asparagus is coming into season!

    Posted 3.12.12 Reply
  8. Lannie wrote:

    omg omg you just made me SO excited for april and the rest of summer.. ASPARAGUS SEASON!!! this looks so delicious!! gorgeous colors in your photos.

    Posted 3.12.12 Reply
  9. My oh my this looks scrumptious! My kind of lunch for sure. Yum!

    Posted 3.12.12 Reply
  10. Tiffany wrote:

    I love asparagus and after making ricotta cheese cupcakes, I believe I have stumbled upon another tasty recipe! Love the contrast — really shows the natural freshness.

    Posted 3.12.12 Reply
  11. Those just say springtime! Yum.

    Posted 3.13.12 Reply
  12. Danguole wrote:

    This looks amazing! Making ricotta is definitely on my to-do list.

    Posted 3.13.12 Reply
  13. brandi wrote:

    fresh ricotta is so delicious! this looks like the perfect light spring lunch

    Posted 3.22.12 Reply
  14. katie wrote:

    YUM! This says springtime all over it. I must make these asap!

    Posted 3.22.12 Reply
  15. Now this recipe excites me a lot! I’m gonna have to make it this coming weekend for sure.

    Posted 4.5.12 Reply
  16. Oooh, what a fresh app! I love this.

    Posted 4.5.12 Reply
  17. Des wrote:

    YUM! These look fantastic. Ryan doesn’t really like asparagus but I bet he would like them after this 🙂

    Posted 6.12.13 Reply