Quiche. Quiche can be many things. The most common species would be the bland quiche, with a handful of boring, unloved veggies chopped up and chucked in, usually raw, so you end up with this wonderfully average watery slice of wodge. Then there’s the just as famous eggy quiche, which just overtrumps with le flavor de egg, more of a frittata in a tart case than anything else. Then there’s the tasty quiche, with creamy and ultra delectable fillings, the one that trumps all. That is my favourite.
A good quiche only needs about three or so different flavourings. Three that work, three that shine. By roasting the zucchini with the thyme and softening the leek first, you concentrate the flavours, also guaranteeing yourself a non-watery filling. Not having a crazy amount of eggs is also key, and the sour cream, well that’s just delicious, and it makes things super silky.
Obviously you don’t have to make a tart crust, but I like to, because you know, if you’re going bake a quiche, you might as well do it properly.
Zucchini and Leek Quiche
1 2/3 cups (250g) plain flour
½ tsp salt
125g unsalted butter, chilled, finely chopped
2-3 Tbsp water
1 egg, chilled
1 leek (250g), white part only, sliced thinly
2 smallish zucchini (500g), sliced into ½cm rounds
2 Tbsp fresh thyme leaves
400ml sour cream
1 tsp vegetable stock powder
salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper
Combine the salt and flour in a large ball. Rub the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Whisk the water and the egg together and add to the flour mixture, combine and knead until it comes together and forms a ball. Wrap in cling wrap and refrigerate for at least two hours.
Preheat oven to 220°C. Spread out the zucchini on lined baking tins, sprinkle over thyme, salt and some olive oil and bake until soft, reduced in size and caramelized in some bits. Remove from the oven and cool.
In the meantime, fry the leek in a saucepan over a low heat with a good glug of olive oil and a knob of butter until soft.
When you’re ready to pre-bake the crust, make sure the oven is still at 220°C and roll out the dough and fit it into a tart tin. Make sure you have a walnut-sized ball of dough left, so you can patch up any possible cracks after. Got the dough ready? Get some baking paper, lay it on top of the dough and fill with beans, or alternatively, if you’re like me and you don’t have any beans to bake, get a few sheets of aluminum foil and fit it snugly against the dough. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes, then remove the beans/foil and bake for 10 more minutes, until very lightly golden. Remove from the oven. If there are any tears or cracks, get your leftover dough and patch them up.
Combine the sour cream, eggs, and vegetable stock powder in a jug and give it a few bursts with a hand held blender. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Now darling, time to assemble. Turn the oven down to 180°C. Get your leeks and spread them over the base of your tart. Pour over the filling, then arrange the zucchini over the top. Place in the oven and bake for 40 minutes. If you have a gas oven, I suggest you bake it on the bottom part of the oven for the first 20 minutes, then transfer to the top for the next 20. If you have a fan-forced oven, then I am truly jealous of you. The quiche is done when it’s not wobbly in the middle anymore and is nicely golden on top.