Squash, Brown Butter and Sage Quiche
Butternut squash and sage with brown butter is a classic combination and it works really well in a quiche. You can use butternut or any of the sweet autumn squashes here. Onion and crown prince squash are favourites too.
- Flaky Pastry:
- 140g plain flour, plus more for rolling
- a pinch of salt
- a pinch of sugar
- 85g cold butter, cut into 1cm cubes
- 2-3 tbsp iced water
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- butter, for greasing the tin
- For the filling:
- 2 tbsp plain flour
- 3 eggs
- 200g double cream
- 115g whole milk
- 2 good pinches of sea salt, or to taste
- plenty of cracked black pepper
- 1/2 (about 600g) butternut squash
- 3 springs of thyme
- 1 head of garlic
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 30g unsalted butter
- 10 sage leaves
To make the pastry, combine the flour, salt and sugar in a bowl and cut in the cubes of butter with a pastry cutter or the back of a fork, or use a mixer. Avoid over mixing as you want to leave larger chunks of butter than you would think, which will result in a flakier pastry. Drizzle in the water and bring it all together. Shape into a ball, then wrap in cling film and let it rest in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the filling. Whisk the flour into one of the eggs to make a paste. Add the remaining eggs one at a time, mixing until fully incorporated. Whisk in the cream and milk. Strain this mixture into a bowl to remove any lumps of flour. Season with the sea salt and plenty of cracked black pepper. This can now sit while you pre-bake the pastry, or it can be made a day ahead.
Preheat your oven to 200°C/180°C (fan)/gas 6. Butter a deep 22cm tart tin (or use a wider, shallower tin). On a lightly floured surface, roll out your chilled pastry and press it into your buttered tin. Line the pastry with parchment paper and fill it with dried beans or ceramic weights, then blind-bake for 25 minutes. Remove the beans and paper and brush the pastry with the beaten egg. Return it to the oven and continue baking for 15-20 minutes until golden.
Meanwhile, line a baking tray with parchment paper. Peel and slice your butternut into 5mm pieces, then spread them out on the lined baking tray and sprinkle with the thyme. Slice the head of garlic through its middle, opening it up to reveal the cross selection of cloves. Place this on the tray too, then sprinkle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Bake for 35-40 minutes until soft.
Turn the oven down to 180°C/160°C (fan)/gas 4. Fill the baked pastry with the roasted squash slices and squeeze the roasted garlic out of its skin on to the squash. Pour the egg and cream mixture over the top. Place the quiche on the lined baking tray and set aside while you brown the butter.
In a small frying pan over a medium heat, melt the butter until it starts to sizzle and foam. Just as the white milk solids that have settled to the bottom of the pan start to turn golden brown, drop in your sage leaves. Let them sizzles and curl up for a moment, then take the pan off the heat. Drizzle the butter into the quiche and scatter with the leaves.
Bake for about 50-60 minutes until souffléd and golden. Leave to rest for 15 minutes before cutting into slices and serving. This is also delicious at room temperature.