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Thursday, July 3, 2008

Ham, Spinach and Mushroom Quiche

I made 3 quiches in 2 days over the weekend. What prompted me to make these was the conversation with my friend L. L, can't cook to save her own life and readily admits it. Her idea of cooking is pouring hot water into cup noodles. Her reason being; there will always be foodcourts, hawker centres and home delivery service. Sometimes, she would just call me up to ask me if I know of the recipe for a particular dish. When I offered to give it to her, she would decline. Last week, I finally know why she likes to call me up.

L : Do you know how to make quiche?
R : Nope, never made it before.
L : How can you not know? (sounds upset)
R : Huh? Is there a problem not knowing?
L : You are my idol you know?! How come you don't know how to make quiche?
R : .... .... Eh.. Aunty... since when did I become your idol?
L : How come you don't know? (still harping)
R : I haven't tried.
L : Why you never try?
R : .... .... (felt like hanging up at this point) Okay, I'll go try over the weekend and REPORT to you!
L : You try already let me know! I will tell ABC and XYZ that you know how to make quiche too!
R : .... ....

My dear L, thank you for showing me off to your colleagues and friends. While I appreciate that but I am not a celebrity chef, you can stop doing that. Please idolise Jamie Oliver, Nigella Lawson and many others. Your friend, me, could not have known every single recipe or cooked everything under the sky. Ahahah~

Unknown to L, I have always love quiche but procrastinated making one myself. One thing that deterred me was making the shortcrust pastry. I really dislike rubbing-in method and would avoid it at all cost. The only time I made shortcrust pastry was when I had to make Pineapple Tarts, so that's about once a year for Chinese New Year. I have another secret; that is I do not know how to line the properly to form an even and thin crust. This is my first attempt. Salmon, Spinach and Mushroom Quiche. I did not have a quiche pan so I used a tart pan instead.


Cross-section of it. The crust is thick in my opinion. And I find that the tart


The next one, I attempted with a cake pan. It was worse! I thought it would be better is I have some depth but I had problem spreading the dough out properly. Actually, getting the rolled out dough into the cake pan was quite a task.


Look at the crust! Horrid!


I would consider my first 2 quiches as a failure. Reasons being; Crust too thick, too much filling, too little egg custard.

My final attempt on Sunday.


Crust still unsatisfactory.


I still need to work on the lining of the crust but I would say the 3rd attempt was much better. I would prefer to use a deeper pan though to accomodate more egg custard. As IH did not want to have the quiche too rich, I did not add an extra yolk or any cheese to it. The recipe below is based on my trials. Thanks IH and helper for eating all the quiches I had made even though they are not up to mark.

Ham, Spinach and Mushroon Quiche

Shortcrust Pastry (makes 2 crusts, 8 inch tart pan)
300g Plain Flour, sifted
1/4 Tsp Salt
150g Chilled Butter, cubed
1 Egg Yolk
100ml Chilled Water

1) In a bowl, add in flour, butter and salt. Use a pastry scraper to chop and combine the butter into flour until it resembles breadcrumbs.

2) Add in egg yolk and water, fold till it forms a dough. On a clean surface, knead the dough slightly.

3) Wrap with cling wrap and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.

4) Roll out the dough on a slightly floured surface, roll out till it has even thickess. Transfer the dough onto the tart pan. Press the dough against the side of the pan and trim off the excess.

5) Poke some holes on the dough using a fork. Blind bake for 10 minutes at 210 deg.C.

*Note : The pastry can be prepared beforehand. 2 options : 1) Baked then freezed. 2) Freeze the extra dough for later use.

**Note : I used the pastry scraper to chop and fold the flour instead of using the usual rubbing-in method. Works too!

Fillings (for 1 quiche)
80g Spinach, chopped
80g White Button Mushrooms, sliced
1/2 White Onion, sliced

Some oil for frying
Salt to taste
Sugar to taste

50g Honey Baked Ham, remove rind and cut

1) In a pan, add oil and fry the onions till soft and slightly browned. Add in mushrooms and spinach. Season to taste and fry till vegetables are soft.

2) Leave aside to cool, squeeze off excess water.

3) Arrange the vegetables onto the crust and top with ham. Press the ingredients down slightly.

Egg Custard (for 1 quiche)
90ml Full Cream Milk
90ml Thickened Cream
1 Egg

Salt to taste
Pepper to taste

1) Add all ingredients into a measuring cup and season to taste.

2) Pour into the prepared crust and fill up as much as possible (usually up to 80% but no harm filling up to 90%).

3) Bake the quiche at 180 deg.C for 35 minutes or till the custard sets.

So you see my dear L, I really have nothing for you to idolise about. Thank you for overlooking my weaknesses. Most importantly, being there for me when I needed you. I am not one who take the initiative to make contact but you made the effort to keep our friendship going. 13 years is a long time but I am looking forward to more years to come.



Terri @ A Daily Obsession said...

looks very yummy! quiches r great for tea *tummy growls*rei, may i suggest tt u don't use cling wrap to directly wrap ur food. it has been sprayed with a chemical tt allows it to cling, but comes off in contact with oily food esp.

Rei said...

Hey Terri, thanks for the info. I wasn't aware that chemical was being sprayed on it. :S