When you are staring into the dark abyss of, "What's for dinner?", there is always quiche. A few eggs and cream or milk, some grated cheese and whatever else you have in the fridge, and …. done. So, here is a cheesy, crusty quiche that will take any spring vegetable you want to throw at it.
12 asparagus spears or green beans
1 leek, sliced
1 zucchini, sliced
6 x 55g eggs
sea salt and pepper
100g grated cheese, eg, cheddar, gruyere
150g plain flour, sifted
75g butter, chilled and diced
pinch of salt
1. To make the pastry, whiz the flour, butter and salt for 10 seconds until it looks like coarse crumbs. Slowly add up to 60ml of icy-cold mineral water, pulsing, until it comes together as a ball of dough. Wrap and chill for 30 minutes.
2. Heat the oven to 200C. Roll the pastry to desired thickness and use it to line a 23-centimetre-cm wide fluted tart tin. Trim the pastry, with the pastry and trim, allowing for shrinkage. Line the pastry with foil and fill with raw beans or pastry weights.
3. Bake for 10 minutes then remove the foil and weights, and bake for a further five minutes. Remove from the oven.
4. Cut the asparagus in half, and slice the bottom half, keeping the top half whole. Add the asparagus, leek, peas and zucchini to a big pot of simmering salted water. When it returns to the boil, cook for 30 seconds, then drain and refresh vegetables in icedcold water. Drain well.
5. Turn the oven down to 190C. Beat the eggs, buttermilk, nutmeg, salt and pepper together. Toss the vegetables with cheese and arrange in pastry base. Pour the egg mixture over the top, and bake for 40 minutes or until set and golden. Serve warm.