BEHOLD the Coronation Quiche, the official dish of King Charles’s big day.
Created by royal chef Mark Flanagan, it is filled with spinach, broad beans and cheese.
The savoury treat is described as “a deep quiche with a crisp, light pastry case” – and cooks can decide whether to do it with ready-made pastry or from scratch.
But how easy is it to make?
A novice cook and non-existent baker, The Sun’s Hayley Minn tried out the recipe both ways, for King and country.
Here’s how she got on . .
I WOULD have thought that a recipe chosen for the nation to make would consist of predominantly cupboard staples, but unfortunately that’s not the case.
The first hurdle I came up against was finding three of the ingredients.
I had to go to a couple of different shops to get fresh tarragon and broad beans for the filling and lard for the pastry.
It seems strange that the recipe recommends the pastry be made with lard anyway, as it’s the only non-vegetarian ingredient.
It can easily be substituted for butter, which I’d recommend.
Or, better yet, just buy ready-made pastry.
I’VE never baked with pre-made pastry before, let alone made my own from scratch, so this was a daunting task.
I immediately felt like it was going disastrously wrong while mixing the butter and lard with the flour and salt.
The recipe says to rub the ingredients together, “using your fingertips until you get a sandy texture, like bread-crumbs”.
This seemed to take ages for me, and I don’t actually know if I ever achieved the right texture, as I grew impatient quite quickly.
While the dough was still quite moist, I decided to head to the next step and poured in the milk.
I mixed it all together, covered the bowl with cling film and put it in the fridge to rest.
While the recipe states it should be left for 30 to 45 minutes, I opted for just over half an hour, not actually really knowing what consistency the dough was meant to be forming.
Once I removed the dough from the fridge and rolled it out I could tell I’d had a nightmare.
I laid the pastry in the tin and winced as it got thinner and thinner.
I knew I was going to have issues later in the baking process, but I put it back in the fridge again for another half an hour, as instructed.
Luckily, I’d planned for this and had my ready-made shortcrust pastry on hand to save the day.
Using the ready-made pastry, which I picked up from Aldi for £1.09, I could just skip all the previous steps, including more than an hour of waiting time, and line a second tin.
Pastry – you need:
125g of plain flour
Pinch of salt
25g of diced cold
25g of lard
OR 250g block of ready-made shortcrust pastry
WHILE waiting for the dough to set I made the filling for both quiches — which I’m very happy to say was the easiest part.
It simply required beating the eggs, milk, double cream and tarragon together and seasoning it all with some salt and pepper.
I also grated my Cheddar cheese at this point, ready to go into the pastry as well.
The spinach and broad beans needed cooking, too, so I put the beans in the microwave for four minutes and fried the spinach to wilt it slightly.
I was sure this part couldn’t go wrong — and it didn’t.
Filling – you need:
125ml of milk
175ml of double cream
Two medium-sized eggs
One tablespoon of chopped tarragon
Salt and pepper
100g of grated Cheddar cheese
180g of cooked spinach, slightly chopped
60g of cooked broad beans
20cm flan tin
I’VE heard the term “blind baking” from Paul Hollywood and Prue Leith many a time on the Great British Bake Off but never quite knew what it was.
Now I do — it’s when you bake the pastry without the filling — and it turns out you can do it without weighted and heat-conducting baking beans, which are usually used in the process and which I didn’t have.
I lined both tins with greaseproof paper.
Then, after a quick Google search of alternatives to baking beans, I poured uncooked rice into both and popped them into the oven at 190C.
Filling the quiche
AS I took both dishes out of the oven and removed the baking paper and rice it was extremely clear that I’d massively failed on my own pastry attempt.
It was already slightly burnt at the top and had a soggy bottom that Mary Berry would be far from happy with.
Meanwhile, the ready-made pastry was looking good.
I filled both with equal amounts of the filling — putting in the cheese, then broad beans, then spinach and more cheese — before putting them back into the oven again for another 25 minutes at 160C.
Sieve the flour and salt into a bowl, add the fats and rub together using fingertips until you get a sandy texture, like breadcrumbs.
Gradually pour in the milk and bring the ingredients together in a dough.
Cover the bowl, put it in the fridge and let it rest for 30 to 45 minutes.
Lightly flour your work surface then remove the pastry and roll it out a little bit larger than your flan tin.
Line the tin with the pastry – don’t tear it.
Put this back in the fridge for another 30 minutes to set.
Preheat the oven to 190C.
Line the pastry case with greaseproof paper, add baking beans and then bake for 15 minutes.
Remove both the paper and the baking beans.
Reduce the oven to 160C.
Beat together the eggs, milk, cream, herbs and seasoning.
Scatter half of the grated cheese into the base, then place the chopped spinach, beans and herbs on top.
Pour in the liquid mixture.
Gently stir the mixture to make sure it is evenly dispersed in the pastry, but be careful not to damage it.
Sprinkle the second half of the cheese on top, then place in the oven and bake for 25 minutes.
Bake until it is set and lightly golden.
ON opening the oven I immediately saw how burnt the crusts on the quiche I’d made from scratch were.
It looked like it was going to be impossible to get it out of the tin unharmed — and it was.
The quiche was so burnt it was stuck to the tin, and I had to force it out in a few different parts, leaving it looking like a big mushy mess on my plate.
On the other hand, the pre-made pastry quiche looked almost as perfectly golden as the picture of the official Coronation Quiche.
I got it out of the tin with ease and couldn’t actually believe I’d made a quiche.
And when it came to the taste . . . both were excellent, even if I do say so myself.
If you love cheese and spinach, like I do, you’re in luck.
Meanwhile, the tarragon adds that little extra something.
If you opt for the ready-made pastry the Coronation Quiche is a relatively easy dish to make.
And it will be perfect at any street party or afternoon tea to celebrate the crowning of our King.