There are few things more delicious and satisfying to eat in the summer than a slice of warm homemade quiche with a crunchy side salad – and maybe a buttery new potato or two! I’ve chosen to use ham and mushrooms in the recipe below, but this could be replaced with whatever you fancy – red pepper and spinach, anyone?
While you can buy ready-made quiche from the supermarket, I’m definitely a fan of the homemade variety wherever possible. It does take a little while to do, so is a good one to do at the weekend when you have more time, or you could substitute the pastry for a roll-out variety or pre-baked case to speed things along when you’re busy.
So why homemade? Well I have two reasons.
Firstly, it’s delicious, the fillings can be completely personalised to your taste, and it feels even more satisfying to eat having made it yourself. Secondly, I had an encounter with a particularly sloppy supermarket quiche at a buffet, which has unfortunately left a strong and lasting impression on me. The ominous drip of runny, eggy … mix? … really should have warned me off, but no. a mouthful did though. (just the one was quite enough!)
So, homemade. Lots of lovely eggs. No slop. Perfect.
Ham & Mushroom Quiche
Serves 4, cooking time 1½ hours
For the pastry:
35g margarine, in 2cm cubes
35g solid vegetable fat, in 2cm cubes
140g plain flour
2 tbsp cold water
For the filling:
4 large free range eggs
50g cheese, grated
2 slices ham or bacon, cut into 1cm squares
1tbsp olive oil
100g mushrooms, sliced
- Preheat the oven to 200C, 180C fan or gas 6.
- Grease one 8 inch cake tin and set aside.
- Put the flour into a large mixing bowl, then add the margarine and vegetable fat, and rub together between your fingertips until it resembles breadcrumbs.
- Add the water and mix. The pastry should start to stick together. Add a little more water a spoonful at a time, until it comes together in a ball.
- Cover the pastry with cling film, and chill for 20 minutes in the fridge.
- Flour your surface and rolling pin, and roll the pastry out into a circle, taking care to move it after each roll. If it starts to stick, add more flour.
- When the pastry is 2-3cm larger than the tin all around the edge, carefully roll it onto the rolling pin, then unroll over the tin, laying it gently over the top.
- Line the tin with the pastry by gently lifting the edges and lowering each side into the tin. Carefully press into the shape of the tin.
- Trim any edges of pastry that are above the edges of the tin.
- If there are any cracks in the pastry, use the pastry trimmings to cover them up. They will stick with the help of a little water.
- To blind bake the pastry, carefully line it with a non-stick baking sheet or tin foil, and use baking beans to weigh it down, spreading them evenly across the bottom of your pastry case. TIP – if you don’t have baking beans, you can use dried rice or dried pasta shapes.
- Bake the pastry for 10 minutes, then remove the baking beans and foil, and bake for a further 2 minutes to dry out the bottom. Allow to cool.
- To make the filling, fry the ham and mushrooms in the olive oil over a medium heat, or until the mushrooms are browned, then set to one side.
- Crack the eggs into a saucepan. Whisk, and add the milk.
- Warm through over a low heat for 5 mins, or until just warm, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat.
- Spread the ham and mushrooms evenly over the pastry case.
- Carefully pour in the eggs, and sprinkle the cheese on top.
- Bake for 30 minutes, or until the egg is firm to touch, with no wobble.
- Allow to cool, then remove from the tin and cut into 4 portions.
- Serve outside, with a side salad, and some sun! – delicious.