There is little I love more than waking up on a Saturday morning to a cloudy day full of drizzle. Especially on a day when I don’t have to be anywhere or do anything. When I can roll over for another hour of sleep, and then spend a good few hours on the couch watching Rage, reading the weekend papers and drinking tea. Bliss.
Yesterday was one of those days.
At some stage I did start to think of food. Which made me think of using up some of the multitude of eggs that are in our fridge. Eggs from our beautiful chickens. Which then made me crave bacon. Which then made me think of quiche. See how my mind works?
So THEN I removed myself temporarily from the couch to see which of my cookbooks had a fabulous quiche recipe – using the absolutely BRILLIANT Eat Your Books website. If you have loads of cookbooks you rarely use, this is the site for you.
Anyhoo, Eat Your Books pointed me in the direction of the gorgeous Jude Blereau and her beautiful book Coming home to eat – wholefood for the family. I’m a massive fan of Jude’s and have been for years. Her food philosophy is similar (but far more advanced) than mine, with her advocacy for eating whole foods. I’m seeing her at a Thermomix cooking demo on Monday and I cannot wait! (Massive thanks to Thermomix too, for comping me a ticket – very grateful).
What I love about this quiche recipe is that it uses spelt flour for the pastry and full cream, non-homogenized milk instead of cream (although I did add a bit of cream…). I used the beautiful milk from a cow named Dolores (owned by a friend), but you can also purchase full cream, non-homogenized milk from health food stores and some good delis.
Jude suggests that this recipe wouldn’t work with regular milk, but if that is all you have, perhaps try with 50% cream and 50% milk (just don’t blame me if it doesn’t work!). Don’t use skim, trim, soy or any other variety.
By Mel Kettle, adapted from a recipe by Jude Blereau
What you need:
90g plain wholemeal spelt flour
90g plain white spelt flour
100g chilled butter, cut into cubes
80-100ml ice cold water (I use filtered tap water and stick ice cubes in it to chill it quickly)
butter for greasing
2 egg yolks
450ml full cream, non-homogenized organic milk
80g cheddar cheese, grated
175g bacon, finely diced
1 red onion, finely diced
5-6 button mushrooms, thinly sliced
What you do:
Put the flours and butter in your thermomix (or food processor), turbo pulse 3-4 times until it looks like small breadcrumbs. Add about half the water and mix for 3-4 seconds on speed 6. Slowly add more water until it comes together to form a fairly moist ball of dough (I used about 90ml and in total it mixed for about 8 seconds). DO NOT OVERMIX otherwise it will be too tough.
Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and place it in the fridge for about 20 minutes.
Once the dough is chilled, roll it out – you’ll need to flour the mat or bench, and also flour your rolling pin well as the dough should be a bit sticky. Try not to use too much flour, but make sure it’s enough so the dough doesn’t stick. Once you’ve rolled it out, use a palette knife (or an egg flip if you don’t have a palette knife) to carefully lift the dough to turn it. Roll the other side – you want it to be about 33cm in diameter and about 2mm thick.
Preheat the oven to 200c.
Grease a 24cm loose-based tart tin that is 3cm deep. Carefully transfer the pastry to the tin (this can be fairly easily done by loosely folding the pastry into four, placing it the tin, then gently unfolding it. Carefully push the pastry into the tin and cut off any excess pastry that hangs over the edge. You might need to use some of this excess pastry to patch any gaps or holes in the pastry. Pop the remaining pastry back in plastic wrap and in the fridge.
Place some baking paper over the pastry and fill it with pastry weights or dried beans or rice. Place the tart tin on a baking tray and in the oven. Bake for 10 minutes, then remove from oven and remove the pastry weights and baking paper. Reduce the oven temperature to 180c and pop the pastry back in the oven for another 9 minutes.
While the pastry is blind baking make the filling. Cook the bacon in a frypan on medium heat for about 2-3 minutes (I don’t add any oil as my bacon had quite a bit of fat, but you might like to add a small amount), then add the onion and the mushroom and cook for another 4-5 minutes, stirring so it doesn’t burn. Set aside once cooked.
In a medium sized bowl, add the eggs, egg yolks, milk, cream and salt and pepper. Whisk it well. Set aside.
Once the pastry is cooked, remove it from the oven and increase the oven temperature to 200c.
Check there are no cracks in the pastry – if there are, use some of the excess pastry to fill them in (otherwise your filling will leak everywhere and make a huge mess). Scatter half the cheese on the bottom of the tart, then all the bacon, onion, mushroom mix. Put the tart tray on the baking tray and carefully pour the egg mixture into the tart.
Gently place it in the oven and bake it for 15 minutes. Lower the oven temperature to 180c and bake for another 15 minutes. Scatter the rest of the cheese on top and bake for a final 15-20 minutes until the filling is lightly puffed and the centre just set. It should be a light golden colour when cooked.
Once cooked, remove from the oven and let it rest for 15-20 minutes. Serve warm with a simple salad (mine was just baby spinach leaves, tomato, red onion and an oil and vinegar dressing).
What is your favourite thing to do on a lazy Saturday? or Sunday? Baking nearly always happens in my kitchen!