Asparagus and Gruyère quiche recipe image

Print Asparagus and Gruyère quiche

This quiche is good hot, warm or cold. It's a lovely way of eking out a small quantity of asparagus while keeping it the star of the meal. If you'd like to cut corners, use good bought shortcrust pastry instead of making it. To vary the filling, try adding bacon, fried mushrooms or slowly caramelised leeks. The sweet nuttiness of Gruyère is particularly lovely with asparagus. Parmesan or a mild Cheddar would also work, but it's best not to substitute with anything too robust.
Its a good idea to make the pastry for this tart in advance, as it will need at least half an hour of chilling.

Ingredients

  • for 350g shortcrust pastry:
  • 225g plain flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 100g chilled butter, diced
  • 1 egg yolk, beaten
  • Iced water
  • for the filling:
  • 350g asparagus, woody stalks removed & saved for soup
  • 100g Gruyère cheese
  • 3 shallots or 1 small onion, chopped
  • 15g butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 150ml milk
  • 85ml double cream
  • 1 tbsp fresh chervil or fresh parsley, chopped

Method

  1. First make the pastry: Sift the flour with the salt. Rub the butter into the flour until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. Make a well in the centre and add the egg yolk and enough iced water to form a soft dough: 1½-2 tablespoon of water should be enough.
  2. Mix quickly and lightly, and knead very briefly to smooth out. Wrap and chill for at least 30 minutes in the fridge. Bring back to room temperature before using.
  3. Preheat oven to 200°C/Gas 6. Line a 23cm tart tin with the pastry. Leave it to rest in the fridge for 30 minutes. Prick the base with a fork and line with greaseproof paper or foil and weigh down with baking beans. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove paper or foil and beans and return to the oven for 5 minutes to dry out. Cool.
  4. Reduce oven to 180°C/Gas 4.
  5. Make the filling while the pastry is cooking. Cut the asparagus into 2cm lengths, keeping the tips separate. Pour 4cm of water into a large saucepan, add salt and bring to the boil. Add the stem pieces and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the tips and simmer gently for 2-3 minutes until almost al dente but still firm. Drain. If prepared in advance, cool and cover.
  6. Dice 75g of the Gruyère and grate the remaining 25g. Fry the shallots or onion gently in the butter until tender without browning. Scatter asparagus, dice Gruyère and shallots over the base of the pastry case.
  7. Whisk the eggs lightly, then whisk in the milk, cream, chervil or parsley and salt and pepper. Pour over the asparagus and shallots. Scatter remaining Gruyère over the top. Bake for 25-30 minutes until just set in the centre and nicely browned. Serve hot, warm or cold.
want to cook with fresh ingredients? try one of our award winning veg boxes