Squash, Sweet Potato and Honeyed Turnip Quiche

recipe by Hannes, added September 2021

Photo by Ryan Scott on Unsplash
5/5

Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cooking Time: 35 minutes
Total: ±1.5 hours
4-6 Servings

A relatively simple recipe that makes for a earthy, sweet-and-savoury herb quiche that really says summer on the farm!

This version of a quiche is decidely farmy and earthy in it’s flavours with the soft sweetness of the root veg and the gem squash giving a bit of lightness to a hearty and herby meal.

When I imagine the older farming and countryside cultures of places like Japan and the Mediterranean, then I see simple but delicious and healthy food with an abundant variety of seasonal produce together in one place.

I’d like to imagine this quiche as the kind of hearty lunchtime meal that is made by a group of hungry vegetable farmers to enjoy together under a tree in Spring (before a brief siesta of course), giving energy to complete the last half of the days work with gusto!

In keeping with the simplicity of the dish, there is the option to make the crust yourself, which allows the infusion of the herbs into the pastry part of the quiche. If you opt to go with a pre-made pastry, then simply add the fresh herbs to the egg and milk quiche mix for the flavour to infuse into the dish from there.

Alright, let’s get started!

.Ingredients

The Veg Filling:

2 x Gem Squashes
750g Sweet Potato
2-3 Turnips
250g Asparagus
1 Brown or Red Onion
2 x tablespoons honey
50g Pumpkin Seeds
50g Sunflower Seeds
Salt and pepper

The Quiche Mix:

5 Eggs
200 ml Milk
100g luke-warm, molten Butter
3 Spring Onions, coarsely chopped
40g bunch of fresh Thyme
2 sprigs of fresh Rosemary

The Crust:

250g Flour (wholewheat, spelt or as you want)
150g Unsalted Butter
Ice Water
1 Tablespoon Coarse Salt

.The Crust

1.   Fold the butter into the flour (using fingers or a wooden spoon) to create crumbs. Add 1 tablespoon coarse salt to the mix, as well as finely chopped thyme and parsley.

2.   Once mixed, add ice water 1 quarter cup at a time and mix until a solid dough-like consistency is arrived at.

3.   Roll into a ball, cover and place in the fridge for 20-30 minutes.

While it’s chilling, pre-heat the oven to 180°C and continue with the other veg prep.

4.   After 20-30 mintues, roll the dough-ball out on a flat surface, then line the base and sides of a tart pan (or your preferred quiche/pie pan) with your dough, pressing firmly everywhere to remove all bubbles. Pierce the base 10-15 times with a fork.

5. Cover all the pastry with foil to create a bowl and fill this with uncooked rice or beans to put weight on the pastry and prevent it from puffing up in the next pre-baking step. (This step is called blind baking and gives you a flaky crust even though you’ve got wet ingredients going in later.)

6. Bake for 10-20 minutes until the pastry is cooked golden-brown.

7. Remove from oven, remove foil and filler (careful not to spill!) and set aside to cool.

.The Veg Filling

We’re taking some different strategies with the various veg here to bring out their different falvours.

Gem squash

1. Add 2 cups of boiling water to a large pot on a high heat, add the 2 gem squash and cover to steam until soft for 30-40 minutes.

2. Once cooked, remove from heat and plunge in cold water for ±10 minutes to cool to working temperature

3.Halve the squashes and shred out the flesh with a fork into a bowl. Gently squeeze out excess water by hand and return to bowl.

4.Mix in 2 teaspoons of freshly ground pepper and 1 teaspoon of salt.

Sweet Potato, Turnip, Asparagus and Onion

1. Slice sweet potato and onion into finger width half-circles. Slice turnips into coin-width circles. Cut asparagus to pieces a bit shorter than your thumb

2. Pack the above to lie flat on an oiled oven-tray, sprinkle with salt and bake for 25-35 minutes until onions start to char slightly.

3. Remove from oven to cool.

4. Pan fry turnips with sunflower and pumpkin seeds and honey on a medium heat until honey thickens but be careful not to burn it!

.The Quiche Mix

1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, spring onion and butter. After combined, also mix in the shredded squash.

2. Place all your oven-baked veg into your pre-baked pastry shell and add your quiche mix. Once this liquid is added, add your honeyed turnip and seed mix to the top and press them down to half-submerge them.

3. Bake at 180°C for 25-35 minutes until the mixture is just set.

4. Remove from the oven, let rest for ±5 minutes and enjoy!

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