In the old days we used to call the following dish a flan, now we have to call it a quiche or we cannot sell it, such is the wonder of European travel, or is it marketing? After all, we were making flans two hundred years ago, before most Britons had ever heard of Lorraine, let alone it's boring Quiche (little bit of xenophobia there, hope you liked it).
6oz (150g) wholemeal flour
3oz (75g) margarine
3 tablespoons water
pinch of salt
1 small head broccoli
4oz (100g) mushrooms
1 red pepper
1 teaspoon marjoram or oregano
1 teaspoon basil
½ pint (300ml) milk
8oz (225g) cheese
salt and pepper
- Mix the flour and salt in a suitable bowl. Cut the margarine into small pieces and rub into the flour with finger-tips until it takes on the texture of breadcrumbs. Add the water a little at a time and knead lightly into a pliable but not sticky dough. Let it stand for 30 minutes in the fridge before using, if you have the time.
- Pre heat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4.
- On a floured surface roll out the pastry thinly and cover an 8 inch flan dish or ring with it, making sure to bring it up the sides and work it well into the corner between base and side so as not to get a thick seam. Prick the base with a fork and bake for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile make the filling.
- Peel and slice the onion and sauté it gently in a little olive oil.
- Wash and slice the mush room and wash and cut the broccoli into small florets. When the onions begin to soften add the mushroom and broccoli and continue to cook for 10 minutes.
- Break the eggs into a bowl, beat them well then add the milk and the herbs and beat together.
- Put the vegetable filling in the flan dish and add the egg mixture. Cover with cheese and bake for 30 to 40 minutes until the filling has set and the top turned a nice golden brown.
- You can of course eat the flan hot or cold, it is equally delicious either way. The basic mixture can be varied to suit whatever vegetables you have to hand, within reason of course, turnip would probably be an acquired taste. Spinach is a favourite, and you can use broccoli, pepper and mushroom on their own, so for a party for example you could create four separate flans out of the one basic recipe without any problem.