No collection of retro dishes is complete without this chic tart featured in Cooking with the Housewives’ League (1989) and Winterberg Winners & More. Nowadays, quiche is used as a general term for all kinds of savoury tarts. Here, the classic quiche Lorraine gets a little taste of my mom’s asparagus tart. The fuss-free wholewheat cheese crust doesn’t need to be baked blind.
Makes 1 quiche (22 cm)
Preparation time 10 minutes
Cooking and baking time 1 hour, plus 20 minutes’ cooling time
YOU NEED FOR THE CRUST
• 60 g wholewheat flour
• 60 g cake wheat flour
• 100 g finely grated Cheddar cheese
• 100 g coarsely grated butter
FOR THE FILLING
• 400 g fresh young green asparagus shoots, ends snapped off (see “Variation”)
• 1 tablespoon (15 ml) butter
• 3–4 leeks, halved, washed and sliced
• 2–3 rashers streaky bacon, finely chopped
• 2 cups (500 ml) cream or milk
• 1 teaspoon (5 ml) prepared mustard
• 1 cup (250 ml) grated Cheddar cheese
• 1 teaspoon (5 ml) salt
• black pepper, freshly ground, to taste
THIS IS HOW
Make the crust Using your fingertips, rub the crust ingredients together. Spray a springform quiche pan 22 cm in diameter with non-stick cooking spray. Press the dough evenly into the base and sides of the pan. Refrigerate.
Preheat the oven to 180°C.
Make the filling Blanch the asparagus in boiling water for 3 minutes. Rinse in cold water, drain and set aside. Heat the butter in a frying pan and fry the leeks until tender and just starting to brown. Remove from the pan and set aside. Fry the bacon in the same pan until crispy. Drain on paper towel.
In a large bowl, beat the eggs, cream or milk, and the mustard together. Stir in the fried leeks and bacon, as well as the cheese, salt and some black pepper. Carefully pour the mixture into the chilled crust. Arrange the blanched asparagus on top and lightly push them into the egg mixture.
Place the pan on a baking sheet (this makes it easier to take it out of the oven) and bake for 45–50 minutes; the quiche should be puffed up and lightly browned on top, and set in the centre (shake the pan lightly to check). Remove from the oven and leave to cool for at least 20 minutes before slicing and serving.
If you’re yearning for a more nostalgic savoury asparagus tart, replace the fresh asparagus with a 400 g tin of asparagus salad cuts. Drain them very well and spread evenly over the base before carefully pouring in the egg mixture.