Real vegetarian food, served in an imaginary world...

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Fantasy Veggie Dinner Guests – THE FAMOUS FIVE

The Famous Five were the heroes of a series of children's books by Enid Blyton which originated in the 1940s and have been popular ever since. 
Julian, Dick and Anne, George and Timmy the dog... yes they are all invited. I know they are partial to a bit of home cooking and portable food. This is high in calories but with all that hiking and bike riding they should soon work it off. 

Quiche has become very popular again. This is a fail-safe recipe which I have refined over the years, with a few tips on avoiding soggy pastry.


Serves 4 - 6

200g/8oz plain flour
pinch salt
100g/4oz butter
30ml/2tbsp cold water
4 eggs, beaten plus 1 additional egg yolk
450ml/ ¾pt single cream
100g/4oz cheese
handful of cut chives
2 tomatoes.

Mix the flour and salt, then rub in the butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. I often make life easy and use a food processor, although using your hands is good, too. 

Add the water gradually until the mixture forms a pastry which comes away from the sides of the bowl.
Make into a ball and cover with film. Refrigerate for about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, grease and flour a 20cm/ 8inch flan dish

Roll out the pastry and line the dish. Prick the base all over with a fork.
Refrigerate again for 20 minutes. 

Use a sharp knife to trim the sides.
Then line with baking parchment and fill with baking beans.

Cook for about 10 minutes at Gas 7/ 220C/ 425F.
Remove the beans and parchment. 
Mix an egg yolk with a little water and brush over the pastry to seal it. Cook for about 5 minutes more until pastry feels dry. Allow to cool.

Now prepare the filling:

You need about 8 slices from the tomatoes; remove pulpy centre and chop the rest. 
Place on kitchen roll to dry.

Wash the chives and snip them into 2cm pieces.

Grate the cheese.

Whisk the eggs and the cream together.

Make a layer of the chopped tomatoes and sprinkle over the chives and cheese.

Pour the cream mixture over the top.

Bake in a pre-heated oven at 200C/ Gas 6/ 400F for about 10 mins. 

Then add slices of tomato to the top and bake for 10-15 minutes more.

Serve with accompaniments such as salad and potatoes.

Any uneaten slices can be chilled and used for lunch the next day.

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