Thursday, February 05, 2009
WTSIM Plum and Apple Quiche
My head feels like we’re in the middle of winter, fogged up with the cold that the kids were so kind as to bring home from school and share with us. Snowy pictures all over the internet feel totally appropriate, except that our summer has reasserted itself and a hot wind is blowing off the mountains to give us an afternoon of 37C.
And yet, despite the oppressive heat, I’m in the kitchen baking, with the oven on, breathing in the scents of cinnamon, if only I could smell it properly. It’s the last day before the deadline for WTSIM and Jeanne has set us a challenge to do a sweet/savoury swap – to make a dish that is usually sweet with savoury ingredients or vice versa. I couldn’t quite get my head round it to start with, but then I started pondering the quiche. There’s no reason why that combination of pastry, egg and cream shouldn’t work as a dessert, with fruit instead of vegetables, sweet spices instead of salt.
I settled on plums and apples to go in it, with liberal amounts of cinnamon to convince us it was pudding. The plums weren’t very ripe, so I gave them a little help by turning them a la tarte tatin in a frying pan with butter, sugar and cinnamon until they started to soften a little. I didn’t quite get the caramelized effect I had in mind, but it did give them more depth and flavour.
For the pastry I used a sweet pastry recipe from Nigella’s How to Eat, that usually goes with our favorite apple tart. And then the egg and cream mix had sugar and cinnamon added to it instead of salt and pepper. Now I have to confess that I was a bit rough and ready measuring ingredients but I will try to make a guess, so that I can repeat it another time and share it with you, just in case you like the sound of it.
Because it actually did work! Our son , who refuses to eat savoury quiches but loves cinnamon, gobbled up his first slice and had seconds, and it got an accolade from my husband too, who isn’t so hot on egg dishes either.
Next time I wouldn’t serve it as a dessert when we had just eaten a quiche for a main course. Today I was just trying to minimize the cooking by doing two at a time and providing supper as well as a frivolous experiment for my blog, but the sweet quiche definitely deserves being made for its own sake and maybe I will add it to our pudding short list.
I think it was the tartness of the plums contrasting with the sweet creaminess of the filling that made it work, so it would work well with any other tart fruits, perhaps rhubarb or gooseberries would be good.
The Recipe – off the top of my head
Sweet pastry enough to line a quiche dish
For the fruit
6 large plums
1/3 cup of sugar
½ teaspoon cinnamon
For the filling
1 cup 250ml cream
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ cup of sugar
Quarter the plums and remove the stones. Peel, core and cut the apples into thick slices. Melt the butter in a frying pan, add the sugar and cinnamon and allow to bubble a bit. Add the plums and apples and turn in the buttery mixture, till they are all coated. Cook gently for 5-10 minutes until they are just starting to soften but still keep their shape.
Line a quiche dish with the pastry.
Whisk up the eggs, cream, sugar and cinnamon.
Arrange the fruits in the pastry. (You can keep the left over liquid from cooking to use as a sauce if you like.) Pour over the cream mixture. Sprinkle with a bit more cinnamon.
Bake at 190C for about 40 minutes until golden and set.
Feel free to play with the amounts. I was doing it by guesswork anyway. You might like more or less sugar depending on the fruit and your taste.