Wednesday, 7 May 2014

spring onion, mushroom and nettle quiche



... i'm not sleeping well.  Whether it's the stress of work or the lay-lines are playing havoc with my sleeping patterns I don't exactly know but what I do know is that if I don't start sleeping properly soon then the world will burn in a pit of despair at the suffering I shall unleash upon it... on reflection that may be a little harsh but if you've ever had to endure insomnia you'll know how I feel... i'm back in London now from the long weekend break and rather than feeling relaxed and ready for anything I feel thoroughly exhausted and just a little high from adrenaline.  One teeny bit of good news is that I seem to have lost some weight.  I assume it's due to the 5:2 diet i'm secretly enduring but it could be the lack of sleep too... anyway, here's some quiche, packed with cheese, something else not known for its sleep inducing quality...


spring onion, mushroom and nettle quiche
another season, another quiche and again I cannot stress enough the virtues of a bit of roadside foraging, particularly when the humble nettle is involved.  I was recently at a 'farmer's market' in London and was quite shocked at the price of a bag of nettles. I guess not everyone is fortunate enough to have access to a patch of these weeds, although even in London there are quite a few large parks such as Richmond or Hampstead Heath where nettles are growing freely in abundance but do try and get your well-gloved hands on some... and if you're wondering how it tastes, imagine an earthy spinach and you're pretty near...

i'm entering this quiche into the teatime treats challenge which this month, has the theme of open top pies tarts and quiches... teatime treats is co-hosted by Janet from The Hedgecombers and Karen from Lavender and Lovage

for the pastry
250g plain flour
100g butter
50g finely grated vegetarian parmesan
water to mix

for the filling
6 or 7 Spring onions - chopped
one large box of closed cup mushrooms (380g) - finely sliced
3 large garlic cloves - finely crushed
15 nettle tops
butter and olive oil
fresh rosemary - finely chopped
salt and pepper
3 eggs - beaten
250ml creme fraiche

make the pastry by rubbing the butter into the flour in a large bowl until you have something resembling breadcrumbs, stir in the grated parmesan then add a tablespoon or two of cold water and bring together into a dough with your hands, you may need to add a little more water to create the dough but you will feel how 'short' the pastry is.  Wrap in cling film and pop in the fridge for at least 30 minutes

carefully pick the nettles... you'll need rubber gloves for this... when picking nettles you only want the top 4 leaves of smaller, younger plants.  I pick them a place them directly into the tub of my salad spinner so I can wash them directly after picking whilst I still have the gloves on... then spin them and set them aside till you need them

in a large pan gently melt a generous amount of butter with a little olive oil and add the mushrooms, stir them around and them leave them until they begin to squeak, then throw in the spring onions, the garlic and plenty of pepper and a little salt, then turn up the heat a little and saute them till they begin to brown a little, then add the washed nettles, place the lid on, turn down the heat and steam for another eight minutes, then remove from the heat.

now your pastry should be ready, roll it out and line your greased quiche pan. Scrunch up some baking parchment and then lay this into the pastry case and pour some baking beans on top. Blind bake for 15 minutes on 150C

once your pastry is turning golden, take it out of the oven and set aside whilst you beat the eggs into the cream... pour the mushroom and nettle mix into the pastry case followed by the cream and bake on 160C for about 15-20 minutes until golden and risen, set aside on a wire rack to cool.  The quiche should easily slide out of the tin.


eat and of course, enjoy!

22 comments:

  1. Mmmm delicious Sorry you're not sleeping well - I hate that feeling of being totally wired from exhaustion :-(. Good news about the weight loss though - think you probably deserve some cheese filled quiche

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    1. Thanks Sally... I know, the weight loss is a bonus!

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  2. Love the thought of this

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    1. Thanks John, love your little comments x

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  3. ooh I love a good quiche - never tried nettles though. Living in the country I really should try a bit of foraging .

    I hope your sleep patterns improve x

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    1. nettles are AMAZING... well worth the try but do be careful!

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  4. Hope you get some decent sleep soon Dom. As someone who rarely has a good night, I do know how you feel and it's incredibly frustrating as well as tiring of course. Anyway, that nettle quiche of yours looks so good I reckon it really ought to have sorted you out.

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    1. thanks C... nettles should do the job!

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  5. Dom, that looks scrummy! I've never eaten nettles, but have always wanted to get hold of some since watching reruns of The Good Life.

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  6. PS Rather than causing weight loss, I've always heard that poor sleep contributes to weight gain. Hope you solve that problem soon, it's very difficult, I know.

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    1. thanks Jean... you know I am an anomaly!

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  7. Sorry to read that your not sleeping well, hope you start getting some good night sleeps soon. Loving the nettle quiche. I really like eating nettle but don't think i've ever had it in a quiche. There is plenty growing where I am, but I don't want to pick those as there are plenty of dog walkers around here - will have to go and pick in less doggie trodden places to forage :)

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  8. Fabulous-looking quiche. I have never tried nettles, I must confess. As a child I always imagined that I would end up with stings all over my mouth. I have never quite been able to banish the thought from my mind even though I know I should!!

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  9. I'm surprised to learn that you can BUY nettles in London! We country folk would think that crazy. Still,your quiche looks really nice, and I'm sure it would work well with other greens too, such as Swiss Chard.

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  10. I will try this recipe. I have been trying to grow nettles in my garden, and believe it or not - they aren't easy to get going! (I know they grow like mad in the wild, which is annoying.) I probably have just enough for one quiche!

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  11. Looks delicious! I've never tried nettles in a recipe - I just remember getting stung by them especially as a kid. Maybe I'll substitute fresh spinach.

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  12. Hope your insomnia improves. I hate when I get insomnia and the world just looks bleaker when you're tired. Your quiche however looks delicious! I've never eaten nettle so perhaps a little foraging is in order.

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  13. What a fantastic combination of ingredients! I've never cooked with nettles but, as soon as I get my gloved hands on some, I'll try your quiche.

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  14. You always do the best quiches Dom. I've been craving quiche and this definitely hits the spot. Now if I could only reach in!

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  15. This sounds fabulous Dom. I have a small patch of nettles in my garden that I need to get rid of - they are now destined for this quiche! x

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  16. I struggle really bad when I don't get enough sleep just for one night, so I can't imagine what it must be like going several nights or longer. I hope you start getting a decent night soon.
    As for the quiche - YUM! Thank you so much for finding the time to enter it in this months Tea Time Treats!
    Janie x

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  17. Cannabis (consumed by eating or inhaling the smoke of) is an ancient remedy for insomnia. [and hundreds of other maladies].
    This piece of information was found in a book entitled: "Smoke Signals: A Social History of Marijuana - Medical, Recreational and Scientific" by Martin A. Lee - which continues to (still reading) be a real eye opener!! Good luck - hope you've already solved your insomnia challenge.

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