Picnics are honestly one of my absolute favourite things. I love having lots of little snacky bits; crisps, sausage rolls (try mine here, or my vegan version!), crudite, houmous… you name it! With the main event either little sandwiches cut into triangles or a quiche. Now I am a biggg fan of quiche, but I often find shop bought versions to be disappointing. The pastry is always pale and limp and the filling uninspired. Which is why homemade quiche is such a revelation!
I know that a quiche is sometimes the chosen dish purely for convenience. There’s zero effort involved, and you don’t even have to heat it up if you don’t want to! So me asking you to chill pastry might put you off completely. However! I promise you it will be worth the effort. At the very least, I urge you to buy shop bought pastry and make the filling yourself so you still get that homemade experience.
The pastry deets!
So first of all; the pastry. This is a classic shortcrust, with a special addition to make it even more delicious. Parmesan in the dough! This gives a really delicious depth to the pastry, though as it doesn’t affect the structure of the dough, it can be left out if you’re not a fan! Once you’ve got the hang of pastry it can be really fun to add in different elements like chopped nuts or herbs.
You’ll need to chill the pastry for 30 minutes once its formed a dough, and then again once its rolled out into the tart tin. This second chilling step is vital to ensure the dough doesn’t shrink, and you get a beautiful crust!
And for the filling?
I loveeee this filling so much. Its creamy from the leeks, sweet from the honey roast ham, crunchy from the almonds and gooey from the delicious goats cheese. I basically decided to just chuck all my favourite foods into the quiche, and it worked like a dream! Its also not tricky to put together, with the only ‘cooking’ being the leeks.
All you need to do is gently cook the leeks in some butter until they are soft but not coloured – which by the by, also makes an excellent side with a roast dinner! This can then be mixed with roughly chopped almonds, torn chunks of ham, finely chopped parsley and seasoning. Once the filling has been poured into the pastry case, I then topped it with torn chunks of goats cheese. So yeah, lots of ‘tearing’ rather than cooking!
How do I know when my quiche is set?
So firstly, I should point out that the pastry case will need to be blind baked. This means that you bake the pastry case (without any filling in) prior to cooking the quiche, which helps to avoid the dreaded soggy bottom! When baking, you line the pastry case with baking paper and top with baking beans or rice (whatever you have is fine) – this stops the pastry case from rising.
Once the pastry has been blind baked, you can remove the baking beans/rice and top it with your filling. My quiche took 38 minutes exactly, but as every oven is different I would check after 35 minutes. You are looking for the quiche to still have a very slight jiggle in the middle, and for it to be nicely golden brown on top. The quiche will continue cooking once you’ve removed it from the oven, which allows the centre to fully cook.
And voila! You’ve made your very own quiche! I really hope you love this recipe as much as I do 🙂
On with the recipe!
Honey Roast Ham, Leek and Goats Cheese Quiche
- 200 g plain flour
- pinch of salt
- 100 g unsalted butter cold & cubed
- 30 g parmesan cheese grated
- 1 large egg yolk
- 2-3 tbsp ice-cold water
- 3 medium leeks
- 40 g salted butter
- 200 g honey roast ham chunks
- 60 g almonds
- large handful of flat-leaf parsley
- 130 g goats cheese with rind
- 3 large eggs
- 250 ml double cream
- For the pastry: Combine the flour and salt in a large bowl. Then rub in the cold butter by hand until it resembles breadcrumbs. Rub in the parmesan cheese, then add the egg yolk and a little of the water. Begin mixing with your hand, adding more water when needed, until a rough dough forms. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and very gently knead into a uniform dough (don’t handle too much at this point). Flatten the dough into a fat disc, then wrap in clingfilm and place in the fridge to chill for 30 minutes.
- Roll the chilled dough out onto a lightly floured surface, to a large circle, bigger than your 9″ tart case. Then, using the rolling pin to drape the dough over, carefully line your tart case. Press the pastry into the edges, then cut away the excess. Place into the fridge for 30minutes to chill. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan.
- Blind bake the chilled pastry case, by lining with baking paper and filling with baking beans or rice. Bake for 20 minutes, then remove the beans/rice and paper, and return to the oven for a further 5 minutes to dry out. Then turn the oven down to 180C/160C Fan.
- For the filling: Whilst the pastry is blind baking, trim and slice the leeks and add them to a large frying pan with a lid. Add the butter, and cook together on a low heat for around 10 minutes until they’re soft but not coloured. Then set aside to cool slightly.
- Roughly chop the almonds, tear the ham into small chunks, finely chop the parsley and add them all to the slightly cooled leeks. Season with salt and pepper, then thoroughly mix. Pour this into the dried pastry case, then tear the goats cheese into small chunks and scatter overtop of the leek filling.
- In a jug, whisk together the eggs and double cream, then pour overtop of the leek filling. Place the quiche into the oven for 35-38 minutes, until the quiche is almost set and has a slight jiggle in the very centre.