It continues to stay cold, which is a great reason to eat warm and comfort food. Today my culinary adventure is this festive chestnut, mushroom and cauliflower quiche with aromatic Gruyère cheese, garlic and thyme. Trust me, a piece of this soft and warm quiche with a cup of coffee or a glass of wine is the cosiest way to enjoy the weekend.
I had a plan to cook something with chestnuts ever since November, when the smell of roasted chestnuts was coming from every Christmas market. I have to admit, I ate many chestnuts during this first winter of mine in Germany, strolling through Christmas markets, with a paper bag of hot roasted chestnuts and a cup of mulled wine.
Now when Christmas is over and chestnuts are harder to find – I miss them. Luckily, I discovered that supermarkets offer packages of cooked vacuum-packed chestnuts all year round. Thanks to this fact, this quiche was possible and was super easy to make.
In general, I love making quiches. I place quiche in the category of ‘genius food’: it works with any kind of filling, it looks pretty, it’s a perfect ‘make-ahead and ensure a stressless’ breakfast, lunch or dinner kind of dish, and, at least in my experience, everyone likes it.
Another cool thing is that you can cheat a little bit by buying a pre-made quiche crust and it will still taste great. Though, of course, a homemade crust tastes even better.
I experimented this time and used the cracker dough (from my THE BEST EVER, CRUNCHY, GLUTEN FREE, SAVORY CRACKERS Recipe) as a crust. It worked… but I have to admit that a classic crust works better. That is why I will be experimenting with quiche crust’s alternatives further and for now will advise to prepare this quiche with a standard crust.
In the end of the day, it’s really about the filling! The combination of flavours, textures and aromas in this quiche is unbelievable. Apart from the special notes that the chestnuts are adding to this recipe – slightly sweet and nutty; the aromas of porcini mushrooms, garlic and thyme; soft and creamy eggs and cottage cheese mixture; and finally the intensive and rich taste of Gruyère cheese. It’s just amazing!
- package of pre-rolled puff pastry quiche crust
- 200 gm of cooked vacuum-packed chestnuts, roughly chopped
- 200 gm of champignons, chopped
- handful of dried porcini mushrooms, soaked for 30 minutes in just enough freshly boiled water to cover them
- 200 gm of cauliflower, chopped
- 4 eggs
- 100 ml of milk
- 150 gm of cottage cheese (I used 20 %)
- 50 gm or more of grated Gruyère cheese
- 3 sprigs of thyme
- 2 cloves of garlic
- small bunch of parsley, chopped
- salt, pepper
- Preheat the oven to 180 C/360 F.
- In a small pan, bring some water to boil. Add the cauliflower and simmer for 5 minutes until tender. Drain well and leave to cool.
- In the large pan over the medium heat some olive oil and saute garlic until fragrant. Add chopped champignons, thyme and chopped porcini mushrooms (keep the water in which they were soaked). Season with a little bit of salt and pepper. Cook for 3 minutes.
- Add chopped chestnuts and saute for another 5 minutes, adding a little bit of the water from porcini mushrooms if it gets too dry. Remove from the heat and leave to cool.
- Meanwhile, whisk the eggs with milk, salt and pepper. Add cottage cheese and mix well.
- Arrange the quiche crust in the pie form. Layer cauliflower, mushrooms and chestnuts mixture and chopped parsley in the bottom of the quiche crust. Sprinkle with half of grated Gruyère cheese. Pour the egg mixture on top.
- Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven, sprinkle with remaining cheese and black pepper and, if you like, decorate with slices of champignons. Bake for another 10 minutes.