True enough: On the day of the December equinox, autumn is officially over – but what better day to choose to celebrate the fall harvest’s richness once more and right before we submerge into rich and sumptuous Christmas cooking?
The ingredients are available in the markets right now and for the weeks to come. So here is what I made of them.
For the crust:
- 200 grams of strong flour (German type 550)
- 100 grams of butter
- 1 tip of a knife of salt
- 1 egg yolk
- a few tablespoons of water
- butter for preparing the quiche pan
For the filling:
- ca. 500 grams of mixed pumpkin, cut into cubes
- 4-5 tablespoons of olive oil
- sea salt flakes
- 2 quinces
- juice of one lemon
- ca. 125 grams of brown mushroom
- 3 medium eggs
- 450 grams of crème fraîche
- freshly ground nutmeg
- salt, freshly ground pepper
- one goat cheese (Bûche de chèvre / Ziegenrolle)
- 1 branch of fresh rosemary
Preparing the crust:
- Pass the flour through a fine mesh onto the clean kitchen counter or a baking mat. Cut the cold butter into small pieces into the flour. Rub the butter and the flour between your hands until you have a crumble.
- Add the salt. Form a depression in the center of your flour mix and add the egg yolk. Quickly start kneading the ingredients adding tablespoons of water one by one until the dough is smooth, but not sticky. Should the dough become too sticky, add a bit more flour.
- Form a ball, wrap it into cellophane and let the dough rest in the refrigerator for approximately 15 to 30 minutes.
- Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius (fan oven).
- Butter a quiche pan. Press the dough into the bottom and up the sides. If you do not use pie weights (see next step), prick the bottom with a fork all over.
- Place a piece of parchment paper on top of the dough. Place pie weights on the top (if you do not have pie weights, you may also use dry foods such as dried chickpeas, dried peas or rice).
- Put the quiche pan into the oven and bake only the crust for 15 minutes (blind baking). Take the crust out of the oven and set aside.
Preparing the filling:
- Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius (continue with this step after baking the crust).
- Place the pumpkin into a bowl, add 3-4 tablespoons of olive oil and sea salt flakes (I used rosemary-flavored salt flakes). Mix with a cooking spoon or your hands briefly.
- Place the pumpkin on an oven tray and bake for approximately 25 minutes until soft. Reduce the temperature to 160 degrees Celsius when done.
- Peel and core the quinces. Make sure you remove all of the light bits from the core, they stay hard even after cooking which does not taste well. Cut into quarters (or cubes if you prefer). Rub the cut surfaces with lemon juice immediately. Set aside.
- Clean the mushroom, cut into halves and fry in one tablespoon of olive oil on high temperature for approximately 4-5 minutes.
- Place the quince quarters in a circle, outside up, onto the bottom of the crust.
- Place the pumpkin cubes on top and around the quince.
- Finally, add the mushroom.
- Beat the eggs until well mixed and add the crème fraîche. Season with freshly ground nutmeg, salt and pepper. Pour the mix over the vegetables.
- Cut 8 slices of goat cheese and place between the quince quarters on top of the filling.
- Pick the leave of the rosemary branch and chop roughly. Sprinkle over the quiche.
- At 160 degrees Celsius, bake for approximately 40 to 45 minutes until nicely golden brown.
- Let cool down a bit before serving and – enjoy!