Asparagus, Leek and Tempeh Bacon Quiche in a tender Biscuit Crust
A savory quiche to celebrate Spring, or any time of the year for that matter if you can get hold of some fresh asparagus. Brimming with flavor and a touch of smokiness from the tempeh bacon, this is a lovely dish for your next brunch.
1large leek(white part cleaned and sliced in 1/4" slices)
1 1/2lbfresh asparagus(trimmed and sliced into 1" pieces)
1/2pack of tempeh bacon(abo( 78 g or 7 slices, crumbled)
349gextra-firm, silken tofu(from a shelf-stable tetra pack, drained)
ground black pepper, to taste
For the biscuit crust:
Preheat the oven to 375°F. Lightly grease a 9" fluted tart pan.
In a medium-sized bowl, sift the flour, baking powder and salt, mixing until combined. Pour in the oil and plant-based milk, stirring until the mixture is just barely combined and the flour is just moistened - streaks of oil are fine. Over-mixing will result in a tough crust.
On a lightly floured surface, gently roll out the dough to fit the tart pan (roll out about 2 inches bigger than the base of the pan so you have enough for the sides). Line the tart pan with the dough, ensuring the dough is pressed evenly into the flutes. Trim off the excess with a sharp knife. Gently place a piece of tin foil over the bottom and sides of crust then fill with pastry weights (I use dried kidney beans) to prevent the crust from puffing.
Par-bake for 10-12 minutes or until fragrant. Remove from oven and place on a cooling rack. Remove the tin foil and the pie weights/kidney beans so the crust doesn't get soggy.
Reduce the oven temperature to 325° F. Place a pan of hot water on the bottom of the oven - this will help prevent the quiche from developing cracks.
For the quiche filling:
In a large cast iron skillet, heat 1 tbsp oil over medium-low heat. Add the leek - if you want them to remain intact, let them cook on one side for about 2-3 minutes per side or until softened, then gently flip each one with a fork. Otherwise, you can just stir them occasionally until softened. Place the leeks on a plate.
Increase the heat to medium, heat the tbsp of remaining oil and cook the tempeh bacon crumbles for about 2 minutes or until they start crisping, stirring frequently. Toss in the asparagus and cook just until bright green and still a bit crisp (about 2 minutes), stirring often. Remove from heat.
In a high-speed blender or food processor, combine the tofu, cashews, nutritional yeast, miso, tumeric and ground pepper. Blend on high for 2-3 minutes, scraping down the sides occasionally, until the mixture is smooth. Pour into a medium-sized bowl; if you wish to decorate the top of the quiche, reserve about 12 slices of the leeks plus the asparagus tips - add the remaining leeks, asparagus and tempeh bacon to the bowl and mix gently to combine (if you don't want to decorate the top, combine everything in the bowl.)
Pour the mixture into the biscuit crust and smooth out the top. If decorating, add the remaining leek slices and asparagus to the top, lightly pressing them into the quiche.
Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the center is set, turning the quiche once during baking for even cooking. Let cool for 20 minutes before serving. Enjoy warm or chilled.
*I chose to quick soak my cashews as I often forget to pre-soak them hours before I want to prepare a meal. I measure my cashews, place them in a pot and cover with about an inch of water. I bring them to a boil on the stove over high heat, then let them simmer for about 10 minutes. I also find buying cashew pieces is both cheaper and faster for soaking.