A viewer requested I make a School Dinners Cheese Flan. I didn’t have such a meal at school. I would surely remember it as I never liked cooked cheese. However, a little research did confirm that it was a favourite dish in many schools.
The flan would be made in large rectangular pans. Each serving would be a square portion. But for my flan I used a tart tin, creating a round flan. I used a 9 inch(23 cm) round tart tin, though you can also use an 8 inch(20cm) square pan.
The pastry should be shortcrust. It can be homemade or shop bought. The ingredient list is short too.
Cheese, milk, eggs, salt and pepper make the basic filling. However, I also added onion and parsley to my filling. The purpose was to make a slightly more flavourful flan. Milk is a key ingredient but using cream or evaporated milk will give a richer flavour.
I blind-baked my pastry. But I did see recipes where the filling went into the raw pastry case. I am sure blind-baking didn’t occur in school kitchens. My preference is always to blind-bake when making such a dish.
Often chips and baked beans completed the meal. But a green salad would be a good alternative.
I was so pleased with my flan. The flavour was so rich with cheese. The onion and parsley greatly enhanced the flan too.
A similar dish is quiche. So you may wish to try my Pancetta & Leek Quiche.
Cheese Flan – School Dinners MemoriesCourse: Pies & TartsDifficulty: Easy
1 sheet of shortcrust pastry
200g(10 oz) Cheddar Cheese, grated
2 medium eggs(large in USA), beaten
150ml(1/2 cup + 2 tbsp) milk(cream or evaporated milk will make a richer filling)
salt and pepper to taste(check how salty your cheese is before seasoning)
1 large onion (optional), finely sliced
14g (1 tbsp) butter, if using onion
1 tsp dried parsley(optional)
- Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan
- Line a 9 inch(23 cm) flan tin with the pastry sheet, cutting off the excess.
- Place parchment paper into the lined pan and fill with baking beans.
- Blind bake the pastry for 10 mins.
- Remove from the oven and take out the beans and paper an allow the pastry to cool.
- Fry the onions, with the butter, on a gently heat until they are soft and translucent.
- Cool the onions and place them in the base of the tart case.
- Sprinkle the grated cheese over the onions, spreading evenly.
- Whisk the eggs, milk and seasonings together.
- Bake the flan in the oven for about 30 minutes, until the top has started to brown a little and the centre is just a little wobbly.
- Remove from the oven and place on a wire rack, still in the tart tin, to cool a little.
- The flan and be served warm or cold.