An easy way to use up eggs is to make a nice savoury dish such as quiche. Since I had rather a lot of eggs that i needed to use that is what I decided to make. For mine I used pancetta and leeks, together with some cheese. These were all ingredients that I already had in my fridge so it was ideal in these difficult times. Quiche is the sort of thing that can be made using any number of ingredients in the filling. So if you have a lot of broccoli, sweet corn, peas, onions, herbs etc they work perfectly in a lovely quiche.
The one item that I didn’t have, which I wished I did, was cream. But that was no big issue, I simply used a little milk instead.
The recipe is actually very simple to make, and doesn’t really take too long. I made mine from start to finish in less than two hours, including some waiting time.
The end result was very tasty indeed, a lovely short pastry with the delicious flavours of cheese, pancetta and leeks. I think it would be perfect for lunch, just a slice or two, on its’ own or with some salad for a main meal.
for the filling:
- 250g (1 3/4 cup) pancetta lardons( or smoked/unsmoked bacon/ham cubed)
- 2 (2 1/2 cups when chopped) leeks finely chopped (or scallions/spring onions/ shallots/onions)
- 4 medium eggs(large in USA)
- 2 tbsp cream(or milk)
- 75g( 1 cup) grated cheese( I used cheddar)
- 15g(3 tbsp or so) grated parmesan
- 2 tbsp chopped parsley
- salt and pepper to taste
for the pastry:
- 200g(1 1/3 cups) plain flour
- 100g(7 tbsp) cold butter cubed
- 2 -3 tbsp cold water
- pinch of salt
- Place the flour, salt and butter into a food processor and blitz to achieve a fine breadcrumb-like texture(this can be done by hand, rubbing the butter into the flour).
- Tip the mixture into a bowl and add 2 tbsp of water, then mix into the flour until it starts to clump.
- Use your hands to squeeze the mixture into a dough, adding a little more water if necessary.
- Form the dough into a disc and wrap in plastic wrap, then chill for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/400F.
- Roll the dough out, on a lightly floured surface, to a circle with a diameter of 14 inches/34 cm.
- Place the dough into a greased 10 inch/25cm tart tin leaving some pastry overlapping the edge.
- Gently push into the sides.
- Use a fork to prick all over the base of the pastry.
- Chill in the fridge for 10 minutes.
- Line the dough with parchment paper, or aluminium foil, and fill with baking beans or such-like.
- Bake in the oven for 12 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and remove the baking beans and parchment paper, then bake in the oven for a further 8 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and set aside.
- In a large frying pan fry the pancetta(if using ham you don’t need to fry it), until it releases some of the fat and begins to brown a little.
- Add the chopped leeks and allow to sweat and cook down until the pancetta is browned and the whole mixture has reduced and the leeks are softened. (if not cooking pancetta/bacon you will need a little oil for the leeks).
- Drain the pancetta and leeks to get rid of any excess fat.
- In a bowl place the eggs and cream/milk and add salt and pepper to taste.
- Whisk together until all combined.
- Add the parsley and whisk to combine.
- Add the cheddar cheese and whisk to combine.
- Stir in the pancetta and leeks.
- Pour the mixture into the tart case and gently spread all over the base.
- Sprinkle the grated parmesan(or other cheese) on top.
- Bake in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes(mine took 18) until the mixture is fully set.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes before removing from the tart tin and serving.