fiddlehead and chive quiche

I don’t know if it’s that noticeable, but it’s been a bit quieter around here on tentimestea. I think I’ve been developing a bit of blog fatigue. I’m certainly not in lack of food posts and photos (I’ve got 27 drafts at the moment–well, 26 with this one published–in various stages of completion).

But I’ve been feeling a bit tired lately. Maybe because work and studying and the occasional attempt at being social is slowly burning me out. Maybe because I have such a backlog of posts, so by the time I get around to writing them, I’ve already forgotten everything I had to say. Maybe because by the time I get around to posting the posts, I feel less excited about them because it’s been so long. Maybe because I realllly don’t like uploading the excessive amount of photos I take.

(Yes, the photos must be the main culprit.)

Part of this fatigue has manifested itself into lazy proofreading. In fact, almost no proofreading. Which should not come as a surprise to any readers of this blog as it is absolutely replete with errors and quite frankly I’m very prone to long-winded and cluttered run-on sentences and the occasional excessive adjective.

The run-on sentences are really too much trouble for me to deal with (after all, “I have made this longer than usual because I have not had time to make it shorter” and I can be, despite appearances, occasionally quite the busy person), but when I was skimming through last week’s post I had to let out an audible gasp at my use of “it’s” instead of “its.” No, I didn’t actually gasp–I’m usually not the best with grammar–but it was as though that single word was written in a font five sizes bigger than the surrounding text. It turns out that the use of it’s/its has possibly become one of my pet peeves–when I’m reading something it really stands out to me, and yet I always seem to type “it’s” irregardless. (So let me know if you see me using it improperly so I can quickly change it!)

But on to the quiche. Quiche is oh goodness one of the richest and loveliest things. I’ve been wanting to make it since seeing Johanne’s lovely spring-vegetable filled quiche on the French Gardener Dishes. The only problem with making it yourself is that you see all the butter and cream and eggs and cheese that goes into it…

This quiche has managed to jump the very, very long queue because I wanted to post this before the end of the fiddleheads season. We usually cook fiddleheads only with some butter and salt and pepper, but then your leftovers can be used for the quiche (if you have any).

You might not think it, but the pastry was light and flaky, even under a thick layer of custard (though I needed to bake it more to get more colour on the bottom), buttery and a bit salty.

I also had quite a bit of fun with all the herbs…I only wish I had some parsley though! Ever since it fell to the vicious onslaught of aphids I’ve been sorely missing its presence.

Oh and happy Fiesta Friday to you all! I’m a bit late to Angie’s party, co-hosted by the absolutely lovely Loretta of Safari Of The Mind and marvellous Caroline of Caroline’s Cooking

bone
from Bone by Jeff Smith (Image source)

Fiddlehead and chive quiche

Pastry

Adapted from Chez Pim. Makes enough to thinly line 10 4-cm tart pans. I enjoyed this half-spelt pastry quite a bit more than the full-spelt pastry I made for this tart

1 stick butter

75 g spelt flour

75 g white flour

generous pinch salt

cold water

The method is to pile the flour and salt on the counter, cut the butter into thin pieces, and incorporate it using the heel of your hand into large flakes as opposed to rubbing it in with the finger tips. Follow the procedure outlined here by Chez Pim. My description is quite subpar and nowhere near as handy and useful as her photo guide!

 

Filling

Adapted from the French Gardener Dishes and her delightfully golden asparagus and caramelized shallot quiche. 

fiddleheads

10 cremini mushrooms

1 large slice red onion

large handful chives

large chunk of 3 year aged cheddar

handful of soft, unripened goat cheese

5 eggs

125 mL heavy cream

125 mL milk

2 tsp dijon mustard

2 tsp grainy mustard

some herbs: lengths of chive, chive flowers, sage leaves, sprigs of thyme, fronds of dill, parsley leaves would be nice here

Preheat oven to 375.

Clean fiddleheads, boil in salted water until cooked through and just tender (8 minutes or so). Drain.

Chop mushrooms into dice, saute in a pan with a pat of butter until well-browned. Finely chop the red onion and chives. Grate the cheddar and crumble the goat cheese.

Whisk together the eggs, cream, milk, mustards, and season with a pinch of salt and some pepper.

Roll out the pastry on a floured surface until nice and thin (a 1/4″ thick or so). Cut into pieces and use them to line the tart pans, re-roll the excess and scraps until all pans are lined.

Arrange the chopped mushroom, onion, chives and cheeses on the bottom of the pans. Cover with the egg mixture, filling each tart nearly to the top. Arrange fiddleheads and the herbs on top.

Bake the small tarts for around 25 minutes or until set and slightly golden on top.

Let cool a bit before unmoulding. Serve with yoghurt and shaved radishes (oh parsley would also be nice here as well).

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lemon dill rolled cake

The last time I remember doing was commenting that I really needed to get started on my Fiesta Friday post. That was for the last Fiesta Friday. And then, before I knew it, it was already next Friday. And so here I am.

But regardless of whether this is actually a late FF#72 post or an on-time FF#73 post, happy FF! It is, weekly and without fail, hosted by Angie, the Novice Gardener, and this week co-hosted by one of my favourite baking bloggers, Michelle of Giraffes can Bake, and favourite blogging aunt, Cooking with Aunt Juju.

I’ve brought another herb-y sort of cake this week. It’s quite refreshing and has a lovely gentle dill taste that isn’t too strong, but still distinctively present. The only problem is that eating this cake made me really, really want to eat some gravlax.

(Or was that a problem? Maybe it was just a bit disconcerting.)

This cake was certainly much better than the last roll cake I attempted. I really like this cake recipe that I found on the wonderfully inspiring Coconut Craze blog (Sridevi always brings something lovely to Fiesta Friday)–I like the size, the ease with which the batter spreads evenly in the pan, and it rolled much, much better.

I also appreciated how the recipe has guidelines on how many times you should fold! I’ve mentioned this a number of times, but once more doesn’t hurt: I do tend to beat all the air out of anything when I’m folding. The recipe guidelines provided a handy bit of reassurance. However my filling (a slightly arbitrary mixture of cream, lemon curd and meringue) was a disaster; it tasted nice–very light and creamy and sweet, but it was much too runny and didn’t hold its shape. It was not exactly suitable for this sort of cake, making it very difficult to roll without losing most of the filling! Perhaps had I allowed it to sit in the fridge for a while it might have slightly firmed up.

I meant to make this cake once more to work on the filling, but our dill plant has become infested with aphids… I’ll return to it someday, though I think the way to go would simply be lemon curd and whipped cream (perhaps double the lemon curd).

The next herbs to work on are parsley and cilantro. Those two I find impossible to separate from savoury food in my head, maybe because I use them so often, but they should be easier than chives and its slight onion-y sort of flavour.

(Really, just what would you do with that? Though I’m sure there must be a way!)

Lemon dill rolled cake

Adapted from this swiss roll cake from Coconut Craze

fresh dill

2 eggs

grated zest of one lemon

50 g icing sugar

35 g flour

2 tbsp milk

Preheat oven to 350F.

Butter an 8-9″ square pan and line the bottom with a piece of parchment paper. Butter the parchment paper. Scatter the paper with small fronds of dill.

Beat the eggs and lemon zest until foamy, sift in the powdered sugar, and continue to beat until thick and light. Sift the flour overtop and fold in (the original recipe suggests 10 folds).

Add the milk (and some additional finely chopped dill if you like) and fold until completely combined and beyond that (original recipe suggestion is 50 times).

Scrape the cake batter into the prepared pan and spread by tilting. Give it a gentle tap on the counter to release large air bubbles. Bake for around 15 minutes or until baked through. Remove from the pan and let cool on a wire rack.

While it is still warm, place another sheet of parchment paper on top, place on a towel, and gently roll up the cake.

 

Lemon curd

60 mL lemon juice

1 egg  + 1 egg yolk

1.5 tbsp butter

Gently heat lemon juice and egg together whisk whisking constantly, until thickened. Beat in the butter, press through a sieve, cover, and set aside to cool.

 

Italian meringue

The amount of sugar was a bit of an arbitrary decision and perhaps it wasn’t enough? I never managed to whip it to full thickness…I’m not sure though, it might just be me and the fact that I got tired and gave up too quickly.

1 egg white

twice the mass in sugar

Beat the egg white until it reaches stiff peaks.

Heat the sugar with enough water to dissolve and cook until it reaches 240F (softball stage). Remove from heat and slowly pour into the egg white, whisking constantly. Continue whisking until meringue becomes thick and glossy and has cooled down.

 

Assembly

100 g cream

Whip cream to stiff peaks. Lighten lemon curd with enough Italian meringue to sweeten (I used around 70 g which was more than enough…40 g would be sufficient) and then fold in the whipped cream.

Gently unroll the cake and peel off the top piece of parchment paper (the dill side should be facing downwards). Spread generously with filling and roll up the cake, peeling it from the bottom piece of parchment as you do so. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and chill for at least a few hours to let it firm up a bit before serving.

Serve with a quenelle of extra meringue (beaten with a bit of soft butter if desired) or excess filling.

blueberry, hazelnut and rosemary cake

In my limited experience with oil cakes, they do often seem to come out a bit on the heavier side; moist but also a little bit solid. The olive oil cake from Bouchon Bakery has seemed to be a particular exception; very light and without the oiliness to the crumb that can accompany other oil cakes.

I was hoping to replicate that with this adaptation, but I didn’t. The crumb was very moist in a way that seemed to be eggy, sort of like a clafoutis (if I remember/imagine what a clafoutis is like correctly) despite that there weren’t too many eggs in it–in other words, this cake was rather heavy.

Part of the blame may be baking the cake in a round cake pan instead of a sheet pan, and thus resulting in a much thicker cake. Blame can also be assigned to the blueberries which inevitably weighed down the cake, and the hazelnut cream spread over top.

However I did really enjoy the flavours. The hazelnut cream (a carryover from last week) on top gives the cake a very sweet and crisp and pleasant top crust, and the cake itself isn’t too sweet so the blueberries and the top make it a nice breakfast-y sort of cake. Or dessert-y sort of cake. Either works.

And happy Fiesta Friday! I always love FF, hosted by the incredibly hospitable (who else can have the energy to hold a party every week!) Angie, the Novice Gardener. I’m especially excited as this week I have the honour of cohosting! This is my first time, so luckily I’ll be doing so alongside Jhuls, the Not So Creative Cook, who has always been such a sweet and welcoming cohost!

If you haven’t yet heard of Fiesta Friday or gathered your courage to join, it’s the perfect week for you to start. Fiesta Friday is a chance to share something delicious (or crafty! or inspiring!) that has made your day a bit more special. Take a look at the guidelines here, link up your post at the current 71st fiesta, and be sure to link back to Angie, Jhuls and I, and tag your post with Fiesta Friday. (Doing all this will make sure you’re eligible to be considered for a feature!)

Most of all you’ll be able to join a lovely and supportive group of bloggers–and it is this which makes Fiesta Friday so spectacular.

Blueberry, hazelnut and rosemary cake

Loosely adapted from Bouchon Bakery’s olive oil cake (Thomas Keller and Sebastien Rouxel). Makes 1 7″ cake. Use of the hazelnut cream was inspired by this beautiful (and indeed, quite ethereal) cake from Ethereal Eats with almond fragipane on top. Hazlenut cream was leftover from this poached rhubarb and hazelnut cream tart.

1 egg

1/3 c sugar

a few sprigs rosemary + extra

1 c flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

good pinch salt

150 mL 2% yoghurt

70 mL olive oil

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

125 g blueberries

1/2 c hazelnut cream (see recipe here)

Preheat oven to 350F. Line the bottom of a 7″ circular pan with parchment and butter the sides.

Beat the egg with the sugar until thick and fluffy. Chop a couple sprigs of rosemary finely and add it to the eggs.

Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix together the oil, yoghurt, and vanilla.

Switch to a wooden spoon to add the flour mixture and the yogurt mixture to the eggs, alternating additions of dry and wet ingredients. Mix until just combined; then gently mix in the blueberries.

Scrape the batter into the prepared pan. Spread dollops of hazelnut cream overtop of the cake. Finish by garnishing with a few more intact sprigs of rosemary.

Bake for around 40 minutes or until well-browned and crisp on top, and an inserted skewer is removed clean.

Let cool on a wire rack.