Salmon & Asparagus Quiche
TOTAL TIME: 2 HOURS
SERVES: 6 - 8
Plain flour, for dusting
600 g short-crust pastry
50 g butter
1 large onion, halved and cut into thin slices
1 tsp fennel seeds
Bunch asparagus, woody ends trimmed, then halved lengthways
100 ml milk
300 g salmon fillets, skin removed
300 ml double cream
3 large eggs, beaten
½ small bunch dill, stalks removed
Zest of 1 lemon
100 g cheddar cheese, grated
Heat oven to 200ºC and place a baking tray in the oven to heat up.
Dust a clean work surface with flour, then roll out the pastry to line your quiche dish. Trim the edges with scissors so that the pastry sits 2 to 3mm higher than the sides of the tin.
Prick the surface all over with a fork, then line with baking paper and weight with baking weights or rice. Place on the hot baking tray and blind-bake for 10 minutes.
Remove from the oven. Remove the baking paper and brush all over with a thin layer of beaten egg and return to the oven for another 5 minutes until cooked through but not brown. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
Start by heating butter in a frying pan over a low heat and add the onion. Cook gently for 15 to 20 minutes or until soft, then stir in the fennel seeds and take off the heat. Leave to cool in the pan. Add the asparagus to a large saucepan, cover with 2 to 3cm water, bring to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes. Drain, then rinse in cold water to cool down quickly. Drain and rest on paper towel. Return the empty saucepan to the heat and add the milk and salmon. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 2 minutes, then turn the salmon and cook for a further 2 minutes.
Remove the salmon from of the milk and lay on a plate. Pour the milk into a large heatproof jug and set aside. Spoon the onion and fennel seeds in an even layer across the base of the pastry case. Add the asparagus and, when the salmon is cool enough to handle, break chunks of it over the asparagus. Add the cream to the milk along with the rest of the eggs, the dill and lemon zest, then season. Pour the mixture into the pastry case, top with the cheese, then carefully put back in the oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until the filling is set and the cheese on top is turning golden.
Serve warm or cold.