Vegan Quiche Lorraine

 

Who hasn’t enjoyed a quiche at one time or another?
For most of us in our pre-vegan days, this enjoyment came from packaged quiche bought from the chilled section of the supermarket, its top wrinkled slightly from the cold and the pastry soft. Rare was the opportunity to taste a quiche fresh from the oven, with crisp, browned pastry and a filling dense with flavour. Making one yourself was, of course, the most obvious way of achieving this and now, as vegans, this is currently the only way I have encountered of tasting this historically French dish.
This recipe, understandably, has been adapted from the original Quiche Lorraine, using only plant-based ingredients. Most of them are readily available in the supermarkets, but you may have to hunt further afield to get the vegan bacon slices. The one I have used for this recipe comes from Ocado and has a delicate smoky flavour, which is perfect for this dish. Fresh tomatoes are not a part of the original recipe, but I have used them here to add additional colour and flavour. If you are not keen on tomatoes, then you might prefer to substitute for another vegetable like mushrooms or even spinach. I would advise frying the mushrooms first if you are going to do this. It is important to allow the baked quiche to cool completely before cutting into it to allow it to set properly.


Prep time: 30-40 minutes. Cooking time: about 1 hour 15 minutes.
Makes 1 x 9 ½ inch quiche.

Ingredients:
For the Pastry:
300g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp gram flour
150g vegan margarine, plus extra for greasing
100ml plant-based milk

For the Filling:
1 tbsp oil
1 pack (about 100g) vegan bacon, chopped into small pieces
½ block (200g) firm tofu
250ml vegan cream
200g humous
100g vegan cream cheese
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
Splash of plant-based milk (if required)
Salt and black pepper to taste
1 ripe tomato, cut into thin wedges
30g vegan parmesan cheese
Drizzle of oil
Pinch sea salt
About 1 tsp dried oregano.
You will also need a 9 ½ inch loose-bottomed tart tin.


Method:
First you want to make your pastry. Place the flour into a mixing bowl and add the baking powder, salt and gram flour. Put the margarine, a spoon at a time in with the flour, then use your fingers to work the flour mix and margarine into fine bread crumbs. This will take about 5 minutes. Once this is done, pour in the milk and mix together using an ordinary table knife. When it has formed large lumps it is ready to bring together. Use your hands to work the dough together into a large ball and then bring it out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead gently for just a minute or so to make sure it is fully combined. When this is done, place into a container with a lid and chill for 20-30 minutes.
While that’s chilling you can fry the bacon. Heat the oil in a frying pan and add the bacon pieces. Fry for 8 -10 minutes, stirring often, until they are slightly crisp and browned. When they are done transfer them to a small bowl and set aside.
Now preheat the oven to gas 6/200C/400F and grease the inside of the tart tin with a little margarine.
Roll out the pastry on a floured surface to a couple of inches beyond the size of the tart tin. Place in the tin and press into all the sides. Trim the pastry with scissors to just a little over the lip of the tin, so that if it shrinks it will still be level with the edge of the tin. Place a sheet of greaseproof paper over the pastry and trim to size. Fill this with baking beans or dried rice, then place in the middle of the oven and cook for 10-15 minutes, until firm.
While the pastry is baking put the tofu, cream, humous, cream cheese and nutritional yeast into a blender and blend until completely smooth. If the consistency seems a little thick you can add the splash of plant-based milk to loosen it up a little. Season with the salt and pepper to taste and then blend again for a moment. Pour the mixture into a bowl.
Remove the pastry from the oven and take out the baking beans and paper. Set aside.
Turn down the oven heat to gas 5/190C/375F.
Put the vegan bacon and tomato wedges into the batter and stir to mix. Spoon the mixture into the pastry base and shake a little to even out. Grate the parmesan cheese over the top and then place the sliced tomatoes on top. Drizzle with some oil, season with sea salt and then sprinkle over the oregano. Place the tin on a baking tray and then put it in the bottom part of the oven and bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, until firm and browned on top.
Once cooked, remove from the oven and set aside to cool completely and set. Slice and serve.
I have made a video of most of the basic prep for you to have a look at. See the Video on YouTube here:



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