This coming week is Coeliac Awareness Week in the UK. So I thought I would post something savoury to mark it. Last week I highlighted the campaign in my post on deliciously fruity Raspberry & Blueberry Muffins and shared some of the concerns about diagnosis of Coeliac Disease and misdiagnosis of the condition. You can see the post here.
One of the things that bugs me about shopping for gluten free food, is that the things you used to grab before gluten-freedom as quick ‘go to’s’ in the supermarket for a speedy lunch, for picnics and for a healthy snack are really hard to find. Although you can get the occasional gluten free quiche, sandwich, or salad in the chiller cabinets, I often find we are limited to the same old (very limited) ‘selection’. I have never yet seen a GF pasta salad on the shelf and even the most healthy looking tubs of ‘superfood’ salads contain soy sauce, croutons, semolina, wheat bran, wheat grass or some other variant with gluten. It really pees me off! It wouldn’t take much to leave out that tiny bit of an offending ingredient which would then make food far more accessible.
Day to day, it means that us gluten-avoiders have to plan for lunch on the go ahead of time and picnics require on-going thought, so that when the moment arises for an impromptu trip out, the freezer has a good stock of defrostable goodies ready and waiting.
Quiches come into their own in the summer….. Great for picnics and lunches in the garden, they can be made family sized and sliced or as individual mini-pies for an easily-held snack. They are full of good stuff and can be filled with added cheese, veg, meats, fish and herbs to suit your taste (and your mood).
The base recipe here is my absolute ‘go to’ for quiche. The pastry is crisp and nutritious (having a good portion of ground almonds mixed in) and has yet to fail (or give me a soggy bottom)! Although it doesn’t always roll perfectly, it is so easy to ‘repair’ any cracks or holes, that it can be forgiven an occasional temperamental turn…… The flavour and texture when cooked, far outweigh the small bit of extra attention sometimes required.
My daughter really enjoys a good slice of quiche, but if you ask her what she would like in it, the answer is always the same….. cheese and bacon!
I had wanted to bake and blog a quiche with something different this week, but cheese and bacon is what was requested, so cheese and bacon was made……. I did manage to add some gruyere into the mix for a bit of variation and threw plenty of fresh parsley both into the egg mix and on the top for extra goodness and colour….
I am sharing this simple, but very tasty quiche with :
Alphabakes – this month with Ros at The More Than Occasional Baker (and Caroline Makes). May’s letter is ‘Q’, so I suspect there may be a few quiches on offer (no doubt many of them with fantastically creative fillings)….. As this is my daughter’s favourite and the blog is primarily a record for her, I am happy to cover ‘basic’!
Simply Eggcellent – with the lovely Dom at Belleau Kitchen. This month, he has asked for eggy wonders that are ‘savoury’…… I guess there may be a few quiches sent over there as well then……
The Pastry Challenge – with Jen’s Food and United Cakedom. This is a new challenge for me, but as getting a good gluten free pastry recipe can be tricky, I wanted to share mine as I love it so much…. May’s theme is ‘picnics’. For me, quiche is the perfect picnic food….
Credit Crunch Munch, this month with the BakingQueen74, on behalf of Fuss Free Flavours and Fab Food 4 All. Lucy at Baking Queen has asked for some seasonal ingredients to be included this month…. As the quiche has a load of parsley, which is growing well in the garden right now, I hope that will suffice.
Cheddar, Gruyere & Bacon Quiche (makes 1 x 25 cm/10 inch flan)
130g brown rice flour
50g corn flour
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
40g ground almonds
110g cold butter (cut into small cubes)
1 large egg
1 tablespoon cold water
Cheddar, Bacon & Gruyere Filling :
8 rashers (about 200g) back bacon (cut into small pieces)
60g mature cheddar cheese – grated
60g Gruyere cheese – grated
3 large eggs
250ml double cream
2 to 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley (+ a little more for decoration)
salt and pepper to season
- Pastry : Weigh and sieve the flours, xanthan gum and salt into a large bowl and stir together with the ground almonds.
- Rub the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles breadcrumbs.
- In a small bowl, beat the egg with the water and then pour into the crumb mixture.
- Stir the wet ingredients into the crumb mixture using a table knife until it begins to clump together.
- Bring the dough together with your hands and press into a ball. Knead very briefly to ensure ingredients are fully amalgamated.
- Roll out the pastry straight away (do not chill in the fridge), using a liberal sprinkling of corn flour on the work surface and rolling pin to prevent any sticking.
- Roll to a piece large enough to base line a 25cm/10 inch flan tin and carefully lay the rolled pastry over the tin with the support of the rolling pin. Ease into the base, gently moulding into the sides of the tin.
- Trim the pastry edge flush with the top of the tin, using a sharp knife.
- If there are any cracks or holes in the rolled pastry base, use the trimmed remains to ‘repair’. – Roll and cut to size, and using cold water, dampen both the area around the crack/hole and the down-side of the ‘patch’ and gently press together, smoothing the edges with a finger dipped in water to seal and tidy.
- Place the prepared flan pastry in the fridge for half an hour to chill prior to baking.
- Pre-heat the oven to 200 C/400 F/Gas 5.
- Scrunch and then flatten a piece of baking paper large enough to lay inside the flan base and base-fill the pastry case with baking beans.
- When the oven has reached temperature, blind-bake the pastry with the baking beans for 10 minutes. Remove the beans and bake for a further 5 minutes.
- Whilst the pastry base is cooking, prepare the filling ready for use.
- Filling : Gently cook the bacon in a small non-stick pan, stirring frequently, until it is golden brown but not crispy. Then set aside on some kitchen towel to drain any excess moisture.
- Grate the cheeses and combine together.
- Beat the eggs, cream, milk, parsley and seasoning together in a bowl until well combined and airy.
- When your pastry cases are cooked and ready, remove from the oven and turn the heat down to 180 C/350 F/Gas 4.
- Sprinkle the bacon in an even layer at the base of the pastry case, followed by a layer of grated cheese (reserving a small amount of cheese to sprinkle on the top).
- Pour the egg mixture over the top of the bacon and cheese and sprinkle the remaining cheese on the top.
- Bake immediately for about 30 minutes until the top is firm and set and there is no ‘wobble’.
- Remove from the oven and sprinkle a little extra parsley on the top before serving.