Parsnip and Thyme Galette

10th January 2016

Parnsip GaletteIn Belgium parsnips are categorized as a forgotten vegetable. Why would anyone want to forget about parnsips! Parsnips are somewhere inbetween a carrot and potato – so delicious!

I first started eating parsnips as fries baked in the oven with a bit of oil, salt, and pepper and slowly been experimenting with other ways to eat them, like in soups and quiches.

Naturally Ella has such a delicious recipe on her site for a parsnip and thyme galette. This was my first galette aka a free form pie. Rather than using a pie dish, the dough is rolled out, the filling (savory or sweet) is poured into the center, and then the edges are folded up to keep everything inside.

This parsnip and thyme gallette is a great, light weeknight dinner or Sunday brunch!

ParsnipsParsnip and Thyme Galette, serves 2 for dinner or 4 for lunch

  1. Preheat the oven to 375˚F (190˚C, or gas mark 5) and cover a baking tray with parchment paper. Roll out dough into a circle form (abotu 10in/25cm) and transfer to the baking tray.
  2. To make the filling: Toss the shaved parsnip with the melted butter and thyme and set aside. In a bowl, whip together the ricotta, honey, black pepper, and sea salt. Spread the ricotta over the crust, leaving an edge of roughly 1½ inches (3.8 cm). Layer on the parsnips, and fold the edges of the crust over the outer edges of the layered ricotta and vegetables, pleating the crust as you go in order to make an even circle.
  3. Whisk together the heavy cream and egg, then brush the crust with the egg wash. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, until the crust is golden and the filling is set and bubbling. Remove from the oven and let cool before serving.

White Asparagus Soup and Spanakopita Quiche

19th April 2015

Soup and quicheI am so happy it’s finally white asparagus season again. In Northern Europe, white asparagus season begins in mid to late April and only lasts until June. Compared to green asparagus, white asparagus is less bitter and more tender. They are so delicious that they’ve been deemed “the royal vegetable”, “white gold”, and “edible ivory”. This time of year I simply cannot get enough!

White asparagus grows away from direct sunlight so that photosynthesis never occurs and they stay white. It’s best to buy white asparagus as fresh as possible – normally you can tell by the ends. If you stick your nail into the bottom, there should be moisture. If it’s dry then they’re not fresh.

There is a bit of preparation that takes place before you can eat them. First you have to peel the woody exterior of the white asparagus. This takes time but it’s worth it! You also have to get rid of the ends. The best way is to break it off with your hands, because it will break naturally at the correct point.

There are many ways to enjoy white asparagus – boiled, steamed, in the oven, and as soup. This post includes my favorite recipe for white asparagus soup and a great accompanying spanakopita (spinach) quiche.

Soup and quiche

Soup and quiche

Soup and quicheWhite Asparagus Soup, serves 2

  1. First peel each asparagus stalk from the tip to the cut end. Chop off the tips and set them aside, then cut the stalks into small pieces.
  2. Melt the butter in a saucepan and sweat the shallot for about 5 minutes until translucent – don’t let it brown. Add the chopped asparagus stalks, keeping the tips aside, and sweat them gently with the shallot for another 5 minutes.
  3. Pour in the stock and simmer until the stalks are very tender. This will take 20–30 minutes, depending on the thickness of the stalks. Blend until very smooth, then pour the soup back into the saucepan.
  4. Bring the soup back to a simmer and add the reserved asparagus tips. Cook gently for about 5 minutes until the asparagus tips are just cooked through.
  5. Mix the crème fraiche and egg yolks in a small bowl. With the pan off the heat, stir this mixture into the soup and continue to stir gently for a couple of minutes until the egg yolks have thickened the soup. Warm through over a very gentle heat, stirring constantly and taking care not to break up the asparagus tips.
  6. Serve the soup garnished with a sprinkling of parsley.

Soup and quiche

Soup and quiche

Soup and quiche

IMG_5196Soup and quicheSpinach Quiche with Oat Crust

Crust

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Finely grind oats and almonds. Combine the oat and almond flours with sea salt in a bowl. Add the coconut oil and ice-cold water. With your hands, work the dry ingredients towards the centre until a dough forms. Gather the dough into a ball, wrap in clingfilm, then chill for about 30 minutes.
  2. Press the dough evenly into an 8 inch tart case. Trim the dough flush with the edge of the case. Prick the bottom with a fork and blind bake for about 10 minutes. While the crust is in the oven, prepare the filling.

Filling

  1. Crack the eggs into a mixing bowl, whisk for 30 seconds, then crumble in the feta cheese. Stir in the oregano, chilli flakes, nutmeg and a pinch of salt and pepper. Set aside.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan on a medium-high heat. Add the spring onions and garlic and fry for about 3 minutes until golden. Add half of the spinach and a pinch of salt. Stir the spinach gently until it wilts, then add the rest and keep on stirring until wilted. Remove from the heat and pour into the mixing bowl containing the egg and cheese mixture. Stir well until everything is combined.
  3. Spoon the filling into the crust. Bake for about 30 minutes at 170C/325F until the filling is firm and golden. Let it cool for a while before serving.