I used to resent quiche. I resented it for looking like a pizza but having neither the taste nor the texture of one but I mostly resented it for usually being the only thing available to a vegetarian at a buffet. It was also – to my mind – the realm of little old ladies who had that little old lady smell about them. Therefore, I avoided quiche for years and it’s only been in the last few years I’ve been able to eat it without feeling like I’m punishing myself. I still ignore it at buffets though as a matter of principle.
In case you’re wondering why I’m banging on about quiches and little old ladies when I made a flan, according to Google there isn’t any difference between a flan and a quiche; both are shortcrust pastry shells filled with a custard-like filling, although flans can also be sweet (which I can testify to as my mum used to fill a spongy ready-made flan case and fill it with tinned peach slices and jelly – I’m sure you can guess which decade this was in). So, although I could have called my flan a quiche, I decided to call it a flan because before Googling, I thought a quiche was more involved, whereas this vegetarian flan was as simple as frying some veg in some butter, chucking in an egg and some cream, then pouring it into a shortcrust pastry-lined tin and topping it with cheese.
I used spinach, peas and spring onions as that’s what I had in but you could use any vegetables you like – for example, courgettes and red peppers are in season now and they’d go great in a flan with mushrooms.
It’s probably too late to mention it’s not exactly vegan-friendly so if you want a vegan quiche, here’s my recipe for a Vegan Mexican Crustless Quiche.
- About three-quarters (roughly 300g) of a pack of ready-rolled shortcrust pastry
- 25g butter
- 6 spring onions, sliced
- 2 large handfuls of spinach, shredded
- 125g frozen peas
- 150ml single cream
- 1 egg
- salt and pepper
- 30g cheese, grated
- Pre-heat the oven to 180C
- Line an 8" round tin with the pastry
- Melt the butter in a frying pan
- Add the spring onions, peas and spinach and fry for 2-3 minutes
- Remove from the heat
- Add the cream, egg and salt and pepper, and stir in thoroughly
- Pour the mixture into the pastry shell
- Top with the grated cheese
- Cook in the oven for about 30 minutes, or until the cheese is golden
- Leave to sit for a few minutes to help the egg set